Emma Briant

Dr. Emma L Briant is a political communication scholar who researches contemporary propaganda and information warfare, and its governance and ethics in an age of mass-surveillance. She is incoming Associate Professor of News and Political Communication at Monash University, and is a Fellow at Bard College and Associate at University of Cambridge Centre for Financial Reporting & Accountability. Dr. Briant has a particular research focus on the actors behind influence operations and analyzed the digital transformation in defense propaganda for her doctorate and book Propaganda and Counter-Terrorism: Strategies for Global Change (Manchester University Press, 2015). Dr. Briant’s testimony drawing on that work was central in exposing the Cambridge Analytica scandal and continues to inform international inquiries and policymaking including the US Congress, UK Parliament, Canadian Parliament and European Parliament. She has advised politicians, NGOs and Big Tech companies on threats posed by the opaque digital influence industry, disinformation and contemporary influence operations. Dr. Briant’s first book, Bad News for Refugees, (Pluto Press, 2013, co-authored with Greg Philo and Pauline Donald), examined UK political and media discourse on migration prior to ‘Brexit’. She has served as advisor for several documentary films including, ‘People You May Know’ a documentary on Amazon Prime and previously, as Senior Researcher for Oscar-shortlisted Netflix film ‘The Great Hack’. She is now finalizing her third book, Propaganda Machine: Inside Cambridge Analytica and the Digital Influence Industry and a fourth, the co-edited Routledge Handbook on the Influence Industry with Vian Bakir, Bangor University, UK. Dr Briant also contributes journalism and op-eds to major outlets and is owner of Maven of Persuasion LLC, a consultancy that advises and trains on disinformation threats and ethics in influence.