John Taysom

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Angel Investor
Honorary Visiting Professor, UCL Department of Computer Science
Fellow, Advanced Leadership Initiative at Harvard University
Policy Fellow Alum, Centre for Science and Policy

As Managing Partner of Reuters Venture Capital (RVC), John Taysom founded Greenhouse Fund as Reuters’ venture capital arm in California in 1995.

He joined Reuters in 1982, and was responsible for initiating products involving delivering data, video and transaction services over private networks, wireless networks and the Internet. From 1994 to 1997, he was based in Palo Alto, California, developing ways for Reuters to profit from the Internet. In 1995, he made the first Greenhouse investment in Yahoo; he continued to exploit his knowledge of network technologies to build the Greenhouse Fund into a significant venture capital investor, with investments including Yahoo, Verisign, Phone.com, Infoseek, and Digimarc. He led the MBO of the Greenhouse Fund in 2001.

In 2011, John was invited by Harvard Business School to become an Advanced Leadership Fellow, a cross-disciplinary preparation for a subsequent focus on socially impactful activity. He is now working on three social impact projects:

  • "Three is a Crowd" – a new way to look at online privacy involving staff at Harvard Law School, the Kennedy School and the computer science department
  • "WeNDY" – which seeks to stimulate a design-led approach to reducing the costs of an ageing population
  • "Footfall" – a project to stimulate very local attendance at music events, funded via an endowment, to encourage community building.
  • In news articles

    Privacy, secrecy, transparency: what does it mean for evidence based policy?

    What is preventing the use of personal data for evidence based policy? Drawing on rapidly evolving commercial best practice, what practical steps can be taken to overcome these obstacles? How can data science support policy?