Gong Szeto

"Comfort the afflicted. Afflict the comfortable." -Finley Peter Dunne

I am a designer, entrepreneur, strategic consultant, blogger, and (soon-to-be) educator. I think a lot about the confluence of politics and economics as they relate to alleviating or exacerbating human suffering. I explore the open question of innovation and public policy, think a lot about how ideas propagate throughout modern society, study the art and science of debate and deliberation, study the history of dissent and moral sentiments in various political regimes, visualize and map the complex machinery and information flows of political and capital markets, and consult on unlocking value and increasing efficiencies in public and private contexts through smart design and social technologies.

I spent a chunk of my career in finance at an equity options proprietary trading firm and hedge fund designing and deploying high-performance stock and equity derivatives trading systems and risk management tools for sophisticated retail and institutional investors, ones that rely on real-time price quotes for over 9,000 stock symbols and 180,000 option symbols, that execute millions of transactions per day on the nation's financial exchanges.

I blog about American politics and the history of American dilemmas and dissent at rhetoricsandheretics.com, the product of an elaborate feed and alert engine (an information-firehose, if you will) that I devised recently to test my own cognitive limits in terms of how many American "problems" I am able to parse and cohere on a weekly basis into something grokkable for a general audience. It's a nerdy, oddball hobby, I know.

I co-founded pandoxa.com with Janina Pawlowski to develop new online tools and technologies for the American polity. I also do strategic public/private sector macro-innovation consulting at Santa Fe Innovation Park, an economic development think tank for the State of New Mexico.

I serve on the boards of the Open Forum Foundation and the Preservation of Land for Agricultural Needs Trust (PLANT!). I also serve on the Advisory Board of investigative journalism startup WarIsBusiness.com. I was recently appointed a Fellow at the Center for the Advancement of Public Action at Bennington College.

I was a finalist in the 2009 Buckminster Fuller Prize for YourOwnDemocracy.org an online public sentiment system that merges my interests in politics and finance. I was also named a Top 40 Innovator in the U.S. and Europe by I.D. Magazine in 1996. 

More info about me and my doings at gongszeto.com and some presentations at slideshare and vimeo.

I am a first-generation naturalized Chinese-American, I am a staunch Independent voter with friends from all over the political spectrum, I married a Quebecois Canadian, I absolutely love co-parenting a feisty and brilliant little girl adopted from Hubei Province, China, and we have three mix-breed dogs and a warmblood horse. I reside in Santa Fe, NM, a place much older than the United States of America itself. You can reach me at gszeto360 [at] mac [dot] com. Thanks for visiting.



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