Alena Popova

Position: Public Policy Fellow at the Wilson Center

Twitter: @alenapopova

Expertise Areas: Human Rights, Digital Rights, Disinformation.



Alena Popova is a Public Policy Fellow at the Wilson Center and the founder of the Ethics and Technology think tank. As a political scientist, she focuses her research on digital authoritarianism, its threat to democracies and human rights, regulation of the use of data and AI, export of digital repression technologies, and disinformation campaigns. In 2018, during a protest in Moscow, she was detained using a facial recognition system. Alena filed a lawsuit against the use of a facial recognition system in Moscow, and her case is now being considered at the European Court of Human Rights.
Before joining the Wilson Center, Alena was a fellow at The Davis Center at Harvard University. She holds a law degree from Kutafin Moscow State Law University and a journalism degree from Lomonosov Moscow State University.

Recent Publications:
▪ January 2023, Russia can’t replace Western chips — so it gets them illegally

▪ November 2022, Russian Search Giant Yandex Struggles to Survive

▪ September 2022, Russia’s Unlikely New Dissidents – Soccer Fans

▪ August 2022, Russia Exports Digital Surveillance, Despite Sanctions

▪ August 2022, Tech Sanctions Against Russia Are Working

▪ July 2022, The Kremlin’s data-driven propaganda machine is just getting started