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This is a Berkman Klein alum page. The information below may be out of date.

John Henry Clippinger was Co-Director of  The Law Lab at Harvard University, a multi-disciplinary project founded to research the role of social, neurological, and economic mechanisms on the role of law in facilitating cooperation and entrepreneurial innovation. The goal of The Law Lab is to conduct controlled and open experiments on the Web and to develop open source software to facilitate the growth of a wide range of “digital institutions” to enable innovation and cooperation. The Law Lab is designed to be a global collaborative network of university, non profit and industry partners and is supported by a grant from the Kauffman Foundation.

Previously, Dr. Clippinger directed Social Physics project at the Berkman Center that supported the development of an open source, interoperability identity framework called Higgins to give people control over their personal information.  Dr. Clippinger also directed multi-disciplinary research and workshops to explore the impact of trust, reciprocity, reputation, social signaling on the formation of digital institutions. He is the author of A Crowd of One: The Future of Individual Identity (Perseus, Public Affairs, 2007).

He is founder and a board member of Azigo Inc. (formerly Parity Communications) and consults with Equifax, The Rendon Group, and other companies, foundations, and government agencies on technology, policy and business strategy.

John was CEO of Context Media LLC, a knowledge management software and services company and Director, Intellectual Capital, at Coopers & Lybrand (now Price Waterhouse Coopers).

Prior to joining Coopers & Lybrand, he was founder and CEO of Brattle Research Corporation, which developed artificial intelligence, language processing and search software. He is  author/editor of the book, The Biology of Business: Decoding the Natural Laws of Enterprise (Jossey-Bass, 1999) and the author of Meaning and Discourse: A Computational Model of Psychoanalytic Discourse (Johns Hopkins, 1977).

 Dr. Clippinger is a graduate of Yale University and holds a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania.  He is a frequent participant at The Highlands Forum, The Aspen Institute, the CEO Leadership Institute of Yale School of Management, Creative Leadership Summit, Aspen Institute Italy, Fortune Brainstorm, Arab Thought Leadership Conference, World Economic Forum, Supernova, Diamond Exchange, TII/Vanguard, and The Santa Fe Institute Business Network. 

Projects & Tools


Law Lab

The Law Lab is a multidisciplinary research initiative and collaborative network of University, nonprofit and industry partners. Its mission is to investigate and harness the…

The goal of SocialPhysics is to give people more control over their digital identities: their online identities, personal information and social relationships.


Apr 18, 2007

A Crowd of One: The Future of Individual Identity

Book Description, from Amazon: The individual is not what he or she was. During the Enlightenment, the individual was the antidote to the unruly mob, the locus of rights and…

Sep 30, 1999

The Biology of Business

Decoding the Natural Laws of Enterprise

Book Description, from Amazon: Increasingly interconnected, volatile, and complex, today's organizations cannot be controlled by any conventional approach to management. Indeed…


Oct 6, 2009 @ 12:30 PM

Cloud Law, Finance 3.0, and Digital Institutions: A Report from the Berkman Center's Law Lab

John Clippinger, Urs Gasser, and Oliver Goodenough

The Berkman Center Law Lab is a project devoted to investigating and harness the varied forces — evolutionary, social, psychological, neurological and economic — that shape the…

Jul 16, 2007 @ 12:00 AM

The Summer Doctoral Programme (SDP)

The Summer Doctoral Programme (SDP) is a joint effort of the Berkman Center and the Oxford Internet Institute, which provides top doctoral students from around the world with the…

Apr 19, 2007 @ 1:52 AM

Berkman Book Release: A Crowd of One

by John Clippinger

John Clippinger, one of today’s preeminent experts on how technology influences business and society, offers a fresh and provocative perspective, grounded in everyday and…

Mar 30, 2004 @ 12:30 PM

Social Networks and Science Relating to Human Nature

John Clippinger, Berkman Fellow

Berkman Luncheon Series: 3/30/04 - John Clippinger on Social Networks and Science Relating to Human Nature