BS, forestry and wildlife: environmental resource management, 1996, Virginia Tech
MA, English: communication development, 2000, Colorado State University
Information architecture, content management, media and technology, sustainability, digital engagement
Neal Bastek currently serves as the digital engagement director at Open Knowledge, a global non-profit that builds software and applications to ensure that open data and information is turned into useful and used knowledge.
Bastek has many years of experience with web development and online communications work, including producing brochure-ware style sites for small organizations and campaigns, dynamic database driven sites for Fortune 500 companies, advocacy sites for public engagement, and email and social media campaigns. He is a firm believer in open source technologies and standards-based web programming.
Before joining Open Knowledge, Bastek held a position of an online director at Rootstrikers where he developed and executed online engagement and communication strategies, and managed the organization's digital assets and social media presence. His career path also includes serving as a web director at Free Press, a national, non-partisan media policy reform organization. Before committing to a life of professional activism, Bastek ran the web and multimedia operations at Metropolitan Group and was an account executive and information architect at Edge Design and Advertising.
Bastek’s master's degree is in English with a focus on online communications, and his bachelor's degree is in environmental resource management with a minor in professional writing.
Two young children occupy most of Bastek’s “spare time”. When he's not online, he enjoys spending time with his family outdoors, ideally close to or in the water.
The Open Knowledge Foundation (OKF) is a global movement aimed at opening up knowledge around the world and seeing it used and useful. OKF’s open source tools power the US open data portal Data.gov and the European Union's open data portal among many others around the world. The organization coordinates an international network of local groups and working groups that spans over 40 countries and 20 topics. The staff live on four continents and the firm has no central office.
Information Design Trends: Digital Content Policy