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PROJECT EXPERTS 

WHISTLING AT THE FAKE: THE CRUCIAL ROLE OF WHISTLEBLOWERS IN COUNTERING DISINFORMATION

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WHISTLING AT THE FAKE enjoys the participation of a group of renowned individuals, which includes experts and guests identified among others academics, journalists, professionals, practitioners, and whistleblowers. Assuming the honorary role of Project Experts, they actively contribute to the project's scientific activities organized by the Research Team improving the quality and impact of the research.

PROJECT EXPERTS

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Sarah “Poppy” Alexander 

Sarah “Poppy” Alexander is a partner in Constantine Cannon’s San Francisco Office. She represents whistleblowers and government entities in qui tam lawsuits in both federal and state court, as well as under the Internal Revenue Service and Securities and Exchange Commission’s whistleblower programs. Poppy graduated from Harvard Law School, where she was the co-Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review and an active member of the Harvard Human Rights Clinic. Poppy holds an M.A. in Political Theory from the University of California, Berkeley, and a B.A. from Yale College.

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Kamir Amer

Kamir Amer is an Academy Award-nominated filmmaker and director. The Great Hack (2019), which he directed and produced alongside Jehane Noujaim, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, made the Academy Award and Grierson shortlist, was BAFTA-nominated, Emmy-nominated, and won a Cinema Eye Award. He is currently at work on a docuseries about The Lincoln Project and recently directed and produced Flight / Risk, a feature-length documentary film about the Boeing Max 737 plane crashes. Karim is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

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Prof. Francesca Benatti 

Francesca Benatti is an Associate Professor of Comparative Law at the School of Law of the University of Padova. She is a Member of the Teaching Board of the PhD School in “International Law, Private Law and Labour Law” of the Università di Padova, and she serves as a Member of the College of the Doctorate Program “Persona e Mercato” of the Milan Catholic University. Her main areas of interest are Contract Law, Tort Law, Property Law, Chinese Law, Business Ethics, and Arbitration. She authored three monographs and several papers in different areas of comparative private law.

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Prof. Silvia Bertocco

Silvia Bertocco is an Associate Professor of Labour Law at the Law School of the University of Padova, where she also serves as Director of the Master in “International Business Law” and as Deputy-Director of the Department of Private Law and Critique of Law. She is a Member of Teaching Board of the PhD School in “International, Private, and Labour Law” at the same University. Her current main research interests are in the areas of Health and Safety in the Working Place, as well as of Right to Privacy and Employer’s Control Powers at the Work Place.

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Prof. Maurizio Bianchini  

Maurizio Bianchini is an Associate Professor of Business Law at the School of Law of the University of Padova, where he teaches Competition law, IP Law and Comparative Corporate and Business law. He is deputy director of the Master Degree in International Business Law and he is a Member of the Teaching Board of the PhD School in “International Law, Private Law and Labour Law.” He earned a Master of Laws at the New York University School of Law, and he holds a Diploma in English Law from the University of Kent. He has written numerous articles and two monographic works on business contracts and corporate law.

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Dr. Elisabeth Bik

Elisabeth Bik is a Dutch-American microbiologist who has worked for 15 years at Stanford University and 2 years in industry. Since 2019, she is a science integrity volunteer and occasional consultant who scans the biomedical literature for images or other data of concern and has reported over 6,000 scientific papers.  For her work on science communication and exposing threats to research integrity she received the Peter Wildy Prize, the John Maddox Prize, and the Ockham Award

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Martin Bright

Martin Bright is the Editor-at-Large at free speech magazine Index on Censorship. He was previously Home Affairs Editor of the Observer and Political Editor of the New Statesman and the Jewish Chronicle. He has worked with several celebrated whistleblowers, including Katharine Gun, the Iraq War whistleblower portrayed by Keira Knightley in the 2019 movie, Official Secrets. More recently he has worked on the cases of the oil industry whistleblower Jonathan Taylor and Apple whistleblower Ashley Gjovik. He is the founder of the youth employment charity Creative Society.

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Dr. Dawn M. Carpenter

Dawn Carpenter teaches Finance at The Catholic University of America and is a Practitioner Fellow at the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor at Georgetown University. Her work focuses on contributive justice theory as a moral foundation for business ethics. Dr. Carpenter earned her doctorate in Liberal Studies (Ethics) from Georgetown University and holds graduate degrees in Catholic theology, public finance, and political science. Dr. Carpenter, who is the host of the "What Does It Profit?" podcast, contributes to public engagement and visibility efforts to promote the insights and understanding gained during the project.

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Rawan Damen 

Rawan Damen is Director General of ARIJ. Rawan Damen has 20 years of experience in academic and professional media management, television, and digital training. Damen worked on producing and directing more than 30 hours of documentaries and investigative stories, published in different languages, including the award-winning "Al Nakba" series. She worked as a senior commissioner at Al Jazeera Network (2006 – 2016). Rawan Daman received a master's degree with honors in media and communication from the University of Leeds.

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Jesse Eisinger

Jesse Eisinger is an American journalist and author, who currently works as a senior reporter for ProPublica. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting in 2011 and published his first book, “The Chickenshit Club: Why the Justice Department Fails to Prosecute Executives,” in 2017. In 2021 he co-authored the investigative report “The Secret IRS Files: Trove of Never-Before-Seen Records Reveal How the Wealthiest Avoid Income Tax.”

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Samantha Feinstein

Samantha Feinstein is a Staff Attorney and Director of the International Program at the Government Accountability Project.  She develops and advances private sector whistleblower-rights legislation; represents public, private, and international whistleblower clients; and conducts research, training, advocacy, and public education for the international program. Ms. Feinstein is co-author of the Government Accountability Project and International Bar Association joint report "Are Whistleblower Laws Working? A Global Study of Whistleblower Protection Litigation," published in March 2021. She also authored several other articles, chapters, and blog posts.

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Goran Georgiev

Goran Georgiev is an analyst at CSD’s Economic and Security Programs. He focuses on studying the impact of the Kremlin’s disinformation narratives on public perceptions and policy-making in Bulgaria and the wider Central and Eastern European region. To this end, he conducts data collection and analysis of relevant online content using numerous media monitoring, audience analysis and data visualization tools. He serves as a disinformation expert in several initiatives aimed at countering Russia’s disinformation operations, including the International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Beacon Project.  

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Safa Ghnaim

Safa Ghnaim is Associate Program Director at Tactical Tech, and Project Lead of the Data Detox Kit, Digital Enquirer Kit, and Digital You projects, focusing on creating accessible and engaging resources for adults that explore data privacy, digital literacy, research, and verification. Before joining Tactical Tech, Safa edited and formatted her sister’s self-published book “Tatreez & Tea: Embroidery and Storytelling in the Palestinian Diaspora,” which tells the story of their family.

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Dr. Branislav Hock 

Dr. Branislav Hock is a Senior Lecturer in Economic Crime at the University of Portsmouth. He is an author of Extraterritoriality and International Bribery: A Collective Action Perspective, Routledge 2020. Branislav has been involved in a broad range of research activities, many have been related to anti-corruption, transnational economic crime, and compliance. Branislav is the founding member of the European Compliance Center. He also worked for a law firm where he was advising on various compliance issues. Branislav worked as a researcher at the Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC), where he completed a PhD in anticorruption law.

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Mary Inman 

Mary Inman is a partner in Constantine Cannon’s London Office. After 20+ years representing whistleblowers in the U.S., she moved to London in 2017 to launch the firm’s international whistleblower practice. She specializes in representing whistleblowers worldwide under American reward programs. Her efforts on behalf of British whistleblower Andrew Patrick, were featured in a recent New York Times article. Her successful representation of three whistleblowers exposing fraud in the Medicare Advantage program was featured in a recent New Yorker magazine article. Mary is a recognized expert and frequent author and speaker on areas related to the application of the American whistleblower laws internationally and the use of whistleblower laws worldwide.

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Prof. Mark James

Mark James is Professor of Sports Law and Director of Research and Knowledge Exchange at Manchester Law School, Manchester Metropolitan University. Mark is one of the UK’s leading sports law experts and has published extensively on the criminalization of football fans, and the evolution of the Olympic regulatory framework. His current work focuses on the legality of the secondary market in sports tickets and the regulation of athlete activism at major sports events. He is the author of the leading textbook, Sports Law, and an Editor of the Entertainment and Sports Law Journal.

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Robert MacLean

Robert MacLean is a former US Air Marshal who went public regarding an Al Qaeda plot to again breach routinely unlocked flightdecks. The pilots union publicly protested that the government failed to install secondary barriers in front of the newly armored cockpits, similar to other countries. A year after Robert’s disclosure, the 9/11 Commission report’s pages 158 and 248 demonstrated that hijackers simply waited for the pilots to open the cockpits to get food-trays or use the lavatory.

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Mary Maguire 

Mary Maguire serves as a Senior Lecturer in Law at MMU leading IP and Media Law.  Particular interest in freedom of expression, integrity in journalism, and protection of journalists’ sources. A background in the public sector with a specific role in promoting participation in local government for young people at risk of exclusion, before qualifying as a journalist and finally joining MMU.  Author of Law and Youth Work, I maintain an interest in sources of news and verification of information accessed by and targeted at young people.

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Prof. Joseph A. McCahery 

Joseph Aloysius McCahery is an academic researcher, corporate lawyer and institutional adviser. McCahery is most notable for his contribution in corporate finance and law, European business law, financial markets and banking regulations, the political economy of federalism and taxation. As of 2015, McCahery is a professor of International Economic Law and the Financial Market Regulation at Tilburg University. As of the same year, McCahery is a director of the LLM Program at the Duisenberg School of Finance. During his career McCahery had served as a legal consultant for the Center for European Policy Studies, Monitoring Committee Corporate Governance, The Netherlands Ministry of Finance and OECD.

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Prof. Daniel T. Ostas

Daniel T. Ostas holds the James G. Harlow, Jr. Chair in Business Ethics at the University of Oklahoma. He has taught business economics, business law, and business ethics at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.  He has received more than twenty teaching awards. His research addresses the economics of marketplace ethics and the ethics of corporate legal strategy. An author of more than seventy scholarly works, including three books, Ostas has received more than a dozen international research awards. His coauthored book, Corporate Taxation and Social Responsibility, was recently published by Wolters Kluwer International.

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Prof. Diane M. Ring

Diane Ring currently serves as the Interim Dean of Faculty, Professor of Law and the Dr. Thomas F. Carney Distinguished Scholar at Boston College Law. She researches and writes primarily in the field of international taxation, corporate taxation, and ethical issues in tax practice. Her recent work addresses issues including information exchange, tax leaks, international tax relations, sharing economy and human equity transactions, and ethics in international tax. Diane was a consultant for the United Nation’s 2014 project on tax base protection for developing countries, and the U.N.'s 2013 project on treaty administration for developing countries.

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Dr. Pietro Maria Sabella

Pietro Maria Sabella is Adjunct Assistant Professor in Criminal Law at Luiss University, he holds a PhD in Law and Business, with a thesis on the individual and corporate criminal liability for tax crimes. He is a member of the European Research Center on Tax Crimes and of the International Association of Penal Law (AIDP). His research focuses on corporate criminal liability, tax and financial crimes, but also cyberterrorism and hate crimes. He is Lawyer in Rome.

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Prof. Prem Sikka, Baron Sikka

Prem Sikka is an Emeritus Professor of Accounting at the University of Essex and at the University of Sheffield. Since October 2020, he has been a member of the U.K. House of Lords. Prem’s research has focused on the dark side of capitalism through investigation of accounting, auditing, corporate governance, insolvency, globalization, regulation, tax avoidance, bribery, corruption and money laundering.

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Prof. Ryan Smerek

Ryan Smerek is an Associate Professor and Associate Director in the MS in Learning and Organizational Change program at Northwestern University. He is the author of Organizational Learning and Performance: The Science and Practice of Building a Learning Culture and has an active blog on research-based insights to help create positive change in organizations. He is currently researching “independent thinkers,” exploring questions such as: Why do individuals speak up? What is motivating them? And what are facilitators of effective employee voice?

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Ruslan Stefanov

Ruslan Stefanov is the Director of the Economic Program at the Center for the Study of Democracy and has 20 years of experience in managing and delivering high-quality projects in civil society, research and consulting on anticorruption, informal economy, energy, and innovation in Europe. Ruslan is co-author of the Kremlin Playbook series: a joint project of CSD and CSIS on Russia’s economic footprint and influence in Europe. He is the knowledge and development coordinator of the Southeast European Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI.net), the largest regional civil society anticorruption network in the Western Balkans, Turkey, and the Eastern Neighborhood.

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Grant Turner

Grant Turner is the Chief Financial Officer of the US Agency for Global Media, which funds the Voice of America and other government-funded public service media outlets. Grant is a non-partisan employee of the United States civil service.  Earlier in his career, he served as the Budget Director for the CDC in Atlanta, Georgia and as an analyst in the White House budget office, where he served three years under President Bush and three years under President Obama. 

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Dr. Donato Vozza

Donato Vozza is Lecturer in Criminal Law at the Faculty of Business and Law of University of Roehampton in London. Previously, he served as Research Associate in Financial Crime at the Centre for Financial and Corporate Integrity of Coventry University (UK). He participated in several international reserch projects including the EU Horizon 2020 Project PROTAX and the VIRTEU project funded by the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF). Donato also served as Associate Lawyer at Chiomenti International LLP where his foremost areas of expertise were corporate crime, business integrity, human rights, as well as international, transnational and European criminal law.

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Dr. Claire Warlde 

Claire Wardle is Professor of the Practice at the School of Public Health at Brown University. She leads First Draft, a non-profit she co-founded in 2015. In 2009 she left her academic position at Cardiff University to develop an organization-wide training program for the BBC on social media, verification, and misinformation. In 2017 she co-authored the foundational report, Information Disorder: Toward an interdisciplinary framework for research and policy making. She has been the Research Director at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism and head of social media for the United Nations Refugee Agency. She holds a Ph.D. in Communication from the University of Pennsylvania.