Meet the team: Gwenda Nielen

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From boots on the ground to games in the cloud

Gwenda is a director of Tilt, sociologist, behavioural researcher and former lieutenant-colonel in the Dutch Armed Forces. She has a Master’s degree in both Sociology and Behavioural Dynamics, during which she developed her expertise on disinformation, online & offline manipulation and hybrid conflict by combining knowledge with operational experience. By bringing theoretical concepts in operational context in Afghanistan, Syria, Georgia and the Sahel Region she gained an understanding of the multifaceted and complex system dynamics behind societal and security challenges.

Growing up, Gwenda wanted to become an archeologist or a veterinarian. Although her current position is a bit of a stretch from those jobs, the reasoning for her desired professions was easy: she was curious and adventurous, something she looks for in all the jobs she has had throughout her career.

In her current role she works with the Tilt team to limit the impact of online manipulation on perception and behaviour. The thing she loves most about the job is the people, working together with the Tilt team to (creatively) try to make the world a little better, one project at the time.

Making impact on society

According to Gwenda, the work of Tilt is important because she thinks that the core of online manipulation is aimed at changing behaviour, not just the ways that people believe or perceive things. Online manipulation is instead often aimed at getting people to act a certain way. That is why Tilt’s expertise on online manipulation, disinformation, and behavioural science is important, as we know how online manipulation works in the context of behavioural change. Being considered an expert on disinformation and online manipulation, Gwenda is often invited to speak at congresses and in the media.

Tilt has scientifically proven that their interventions work, because there is a strong socio-psychological framework at the base, that aids people in strengthening their resilience against harmful disinformation and online manipulation.

Are you interested in taking on a behavioural challenge related to online manipulation or disinformation, or are you curious about our perspective? fill out the contact form below to get in touch!

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