Ross Settles’ work focuses on understanding the intersection of technology, expression, and economics and the resulting impact on civil society. Settles is currently researching the application of decentralized Web3 technologies, processes and economics to the unique media problems facing content creators, media operators and audiences in Asia.
Currently a faculty associate at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, Settles was most recently adjunct professor at the University of Hong Kong’s Journalism and Media Studies Center where he led instruction on media innovation and economics. Settles has a two-decade long career as a media operator and investor, consultant, and researcher in Asia, North America, and Europe.
Most recently Settles authored and designed the research approach for two studies of the media environment in Bangladesh. “Leadership or Stagnation: The Future of Media Viability in Bangladesh” (Management Resources Development Initiative, January 2021) examined the commercial and regulatory obstacles to media viability in Bangladesh. “Trust, But Verify – Media Trust in Bangladesh”, (Management Resources Development Initiative, January, 2022) surveyed segments of the Bangladeshi population to understand media trust and different compensating behaviour used in the face of increasing distrust of institutional media. Settles is also the author of “Paying for News: Funding Models for News in Southeast Asia” for the Judith Neilson Institute’s inaugural research report “News in Asia, 2021”, a summary of grant making scope and direction for independent media in the region.