Development in the Digital Age: The role of online platforms & payments in enabling entrepreneurship in emerging markets
featuring Usman Ahmed (ebay), Jake Colvin (Global Innovation Forum), and Althea Erickson (Etsy)
The Internet is democratizing access to the global marketplace for millions of people around the world. Thanks to online platforms, payment systems and logistics services, companies, nonprofits and individuals can embark on global journeys like never before. Join representatives from the Global Innovation Forum, eBay and Etsy to explore the opportunities for economic development that the Internet unlocks, and the specific challenges that global entrepreneurs and micromultinationals in developing countries face.
About Usman Ahmed, eBay Inc.
Usman Ahmed is Policy Counsel for eBay Inc. His work covers a variety of global Internet issues including international trade, intellectual property policy, and financial services. He has spoken at several universities on the topic of Internet-enabled international trade and has published an article in the Journal of World Trade on the subject. Prior to working at eBay, Usman worked at a number of policy think tanks in the Washington DC area. He earned his JD from University of Michigan and holds a BA from University of Maryland.
About Jake Colvin, Global Innovation Forum
Jake Colvin is Executive Director of the Global Innovation Forum @ NFTC. Through GIF, Jake works with startup, business, education and nonprofit leaders to explore the opportunities and challenges associated with participating in the global marketplace in the digital age, and to assess the effect of public policies on international trade and innovation. He is also Vice President for Global Trade Issues at the National Foreign Trade Council, where he leads the organization's engagement with the World Trade Organization, Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, and its policy work on intellectual property rights, environment issues, and the digital economy. Jake has written for Business Week, blogged for Comedy Central, testified before Congress and provided analysis for outlets including CNBC, CNN and Time Magazine. Originally from Long Island, New York, he is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies and the University of Richmond.
About Althea Erickson, Etsy
Althea Erickson is director of public policy at Etsy, the marketplace for creative people to buy and sell unique goods. Althea leads Etsy’s government relations and advocacy efforts, focusing on educating and advising policymakers on the issues that micro-entrepreneurs and creative businesses face. She is also responsible for developing and advancing Etsy’s position on issues ranging from taxes and regulation, to open Internet and free trade, to IP and privacy policies. Prior to joining Etsy, Althea was the advocacy and policy director at Freelancers Union, where she helped build the membership into a powerful political constituency, leading its successful campaign to repeal unfair tax laws and promoting legislation to protect freelancers from unpaid wages. Previously, Althea worked at the Rockefeller Foundation, where she focused on strategies to build economic security within the U.S. workforce. She has a B.A in government and public policy from Wesleyan University.