Core Team & Fellows

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Head of Programs

Sheikh Waheed Baksh is an experienced program and operation manager with a strong background in product integrity, and trust and safety. His research involves analyzing and implementing ethics measurement strategies in artificial intelligence, conducting evaluations of machine learning models, and designing end-to-end integrity review processes. He was most recently leading integrity ops at Meta, prior to which he spent time at Baker Hughes (previously GE) and Walmart Global e-Commerce. Waheed holds a Master of Development Practice degree from University of California, Berkeley and Bachelors in Engineering from Bangladesh University of Engineering & Technology.

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Senior Researcher

Shahzeb Mahmood specializes in internet and technology laws. His research examines online content regulation, artificial intelligence and deepfakes. He is an associate at a top-tier full-service law firm in Bangladesh. He advises several multinational telecom and technology businesses, including FAANG companies, on legal, regulatory and policy matters. He also regularly advises clients on cross-border investments in the fintech, healthcare and telecommunication sectors. Shahzeb is a barrister of the Honorable Society of Lincoln’s Inn and a civil-commercial mediator accredited by the ADR-ODR International UK. He is currently pursuing a Master’s degree at the University of New South Wales.

Advisor, Freedom of Expression

Saad Hammadi is an advisor at Tech Global Institute and a seasoned human rights advocate. He currently serves as a Policy Researcher at Project Ploughshares, focusing on space governance within international law frameworks. He also advises UN Special Rapporteur, Irene Khan, on freedom of opinion and expression. Previously, Saad worked as the South Asia Campaigner at Amnesty International, criticizing restrictive legislation globally. Notably, he independently won a legal battle against Bangladesh Police under the Right to Information Act, challenging weaponization of the now defunct Digital Security Act to target and harass critical voices. Saad's works and comments have been featured in prominent international media outlets, including The Guardian, Washington Post, Ottawa Citizen, Financial Times, The Globe and Mail, TIME, Foreign Policy, New York Times, DW, BBC, CNN, Al Jazeera and NPR. He holds a Master of Arts degree in Global Governance from the University of Waterloo.

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Advisor, Intersectionality and Privacy

Saad Khan brings deep research experience at the intersection of LGBTQI politics and activism, and postcolonial modernity in the Global South. Previously, he was at BRAC James P. Grant School of Public Health where he worked on research and advocacy on sexual and reproductive health and privacy rights. He collaborates and builds coalitions with nonprofit, activist and human rights groups in South Asia, U.S. and Europe to develop advocacy strategies on legislations and policy developments and support research on diverse gender and sexual identities and expressions. His work has received awards the U.S. Department of State, Swedish Institute and the Social Science Research Council. Saad is a PhD candidate at University of Washington.

Senior Fellow, Global Elections

Diane Chang is a public interest technologist with a decade of experience building products that connect people to interesting and informative information. She is currently an entrepreneur-in-residence at the Brown Institute for Media Innovation at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. From 2021 to 2023, she led a number of trust and safety product development efforts at Meta, including empowering global users of Facebook and Instagram to safely engage on elections and civic matters, and developing capabilities to forecast risks in societal crises. She came to tech after a first career as a journalist, then received her Master's in Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School, where she studied the internet's impact on media, democracy, and economic development. She is originally from Taiwan.

Apon Das
Researcher, Information Integrity

Apon Das is an experienced media and information researcher and fact-checker. His research interests include media literacy, fact-checking methodology, mis/disinformation and media representation. He has written books on the introducing fact-checking as a media literacy intervention for majority world communities. Apon received his BSS in Media Studies and Journalism from the University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB), and is currently pursuing M.Sc in Anthropology at the University of Delhi.

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Policy Fellow, Internet Policy and Platform Accountability

Muthuri is a lawyer and human rights advocate, most recently leading ARTICLE 19’s civic space and digital programs in East Africa. His expertise lies in civic participation and digital rights policy, steering advocacy, research and capacity building efforts for online and offline communities. Previously, as Legal Aid Manager at Justice Defenders (formerly African Prison Project) in Kenya, Gambia and Uganda, he established 12 prison-based legal aid clinics and trained over 150 officers and inmates as paralegals. He has received awards from Amnesty International, and was nominated for 35 Under 35 Award by Kenya Youth Agenda for his work on human rights.

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Policy Fellow, Gender Justice and Human Rights

Manisha brings deep experience at the intersection of humanitarian law and gender. She serves as a focal point for multiple civil society coalitions working on the rights of underserved gender-diverse communities in Bangladesh, leading efforts on technology’s impact on identity and civic participation. Previously, she served at the Rohingya emergency operation as a case manager, focusing on child safety and digital access among refugee groups. Manisha holds Bachelor and Master’s degree in law from University of Chittagong. She presented at RightsCon 2023 on the Internet Diet of Rohingya refugees.

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Policy Fellow, Intellectual Property and AI

Fahad is a lawyer and researcher, currently working at the intersection of human rights, governance and intellectual property law. He is actively involved with numerous cases on technology-facilitated gender-based violence, working closely with law enforcement and rights organizations. Previously, he spent time at multiple law firms, leading on various socio-legal cases. He holds a MBA from North South University and the LL.M. in International Law from East West University in Bangladesh.

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Research Associate, Law and Policy

Rushmila Bintay Rafique is a research associate at Tech Global Institute and an adjunct lecturer at the University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh. She holds a PhD in law, coupled with extensive teaching and research experience in public international law. She has previously collaborated with a former Malaysian Court of Appeal Judge, UNICEF Malaysia, CENTHRA, and USIM.

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Global Partnerships Manager

Faisal Lalani leads global partnerships and coalition-building with civil society and grassroots groups in South and Southeast Asia at Tech Global Institute. He is a researcher, activist, writer, and technologist with a history of community organising in countries like Nepal, South Africa, and India. His work spans across multiple disciplines, including tech and democracy, public health, education reform, and clinical psychology. His recent work involves analyzing social media patterns of politicians during major elections in India with Microsoft Research, and partnering with U.S. state governments to manage COVID-19 contract tracing through Dimagi. Faisal is a graduate from the University of Oxford's Media Policy Summer Institute and holds a degree in Computer Science from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is currently a non-resident Fellow at New America's Planetary Politics team.