Catherine Stihler has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer of Open Knowledge International.

Catherine has years of experience in the creation and sharing of knowledge on the global stage. She will join the OKI team in February, and will stand down as an MEP at the end of January after an extraordinary career in EU policy-making spanning nearly 20 years.

Catherine has served as an MEP for Scotland since 1999, where she lives with her husband and young children. In this role she has served as Vice-Chair of the European Parliament’s Internal Market and Consumer Protection committee and authored influential reports and opinions that have shaped EU policy.

She is also the former Rector of the University of St Andrews – where she received an honorary doctorate earlier this year. She has worked on digital policy, prioritising the digital single market, digital skills, citizen online data protection, copyright reform to support internet freedoms, and the role of Artificial Intelligence and automation.

Catherine Stihler, photo by DAVID ILIFF, CC-BY-SA 3.0
Catherine Stihler said:

“I am relishing an exciting new challenge and opportunity with Open Knowledge International.

“Digital skills and data use have always been a personal passion, and I am eager to assist groups across the world to create and share open knowledge, and encourage the next generation to understand that information is power which can be used to address poverty and other social challenges.”

Tim Hubbard, Chair of the Open Knowledge International board, said:

“We are delighted to welcome Catherine to our team. She has years of experience in shaping policy and using evidence and openness to help address global challenges such as climate change, internet freedoms and public health.

“Catherine has demonstrated an ability to bring people together, building coalitions and trust in a world that really needs it. She has translated complicated and technical knowledge around digital skills, copyright and AI to help shape European policy, making a real and lasting difference for hundreds of millions of people.

“Her dynamism, energy and commitment will be invaluable for the open movement as we face the new challenges of the 21st century.”