Gianni Riotta


Gianni Riotta is a Visiting Professor at Princeton University in the French and Italian Department, specializing in digital humanities, machine writing, social history, and visual history of Italy. Since 2018, he has directed the Master in Journalism and Multimedia Communication and the Data Lab Research Center at Luiss University in Rome, where he coordinates the Italian Digital Media Observatory (IDMO). The project, financed under the European call CEF-TC-2020-2 EDMO, constitutes an international hub aimed at supporting and implementing the work of the European Digital Media Observatory (EDMO) with a consortium formed by Tim, Rai, Gedi, the University of Tor Vergata, NewsGuard, Pagella Politica, and T6 Ecosystem, who combine forces and expertise to combat disinformation. He participated in the Horizon 2020 project SOMA (Social Observatory for Disinformation and Social Media Analysis) against disinformation, establishing the Aletheia Center of Excellence, and Media Futures, a “Data-driven innovation hub for the media value chain.” He co-directed a project at Luiss on the spread of coordinated disinformation operations in Italy with Harvard University and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is a member of the Advisory Board of NewsGuard and EDMO. Gianni Riotta was a Logic Professor at the University of Palermo, a Communication Professor at the Media Lab of the University of Bologna founded by Umberto Eco, and a visiting professor of social media and digital humanities at IMT Lucca. As an editorialist for La Stampa, La Repubblica, Huffington Post, Foreign Policy, and The Atlantic, he was the director of Rai’s Tg1 and Il Sole 24 Ore, deputy director of La Stampa and Corriere della Sera. He was a correspondent and commentator for Corriere della Sera and L’Espresso based in New York. In 2015, Riotta founded the digital startup Catchy, which received funding from the Google Digital News Initiative Innovation Fund to study the spread of fake news. Gianni Riotta is a permanent member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the editorial staff of Foreign Policy. He contributes to BBC World Service. His editorials have been published in the New York Times, Washington Post, Le Monde, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, The Guardian, El Pais, Suddeutsche Zeitung, and Foreign Affairs. His books have been translated into numerous languages. His novel The Prince of Clouds (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000) was a finalist for the “Prix Médicis” in France, won the “European Florio Award 2002” in the UK, and was selected by BOL.COM as “Book of the Year 2001”; Change of Season (Feltrinelli, 1992) was included in the Meridiano Mondadori Anthology of the best Italian stories 1900-2000. His latest books are Does the Web Make Us Free? (Einaudi, 2013) and McCurry’s World (Mondadori, 2015). Foreign Policy and Prospect have included Gianni Riotta in their list of “World 100 global thinkers.” Riotta graduated in Logic from the University of Palermo and earned an MS from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. In 2011, he was awarded an Honorary Degree from the State Archives, Rome, for his work in protecting Italian cultural heritage. In 2014, President Giorgio Napolitano named Gianni Riotta Commander of the Order of the Italian Republic motu proprio. Riotta is a member of the board of directors of the Memorial Foundation Fallen for Peace, the Fulbright Commission, and the Italian Academy of  Columbia University