Feb 18, 2021 • 1HR 21M

A European in Silicon Valley

A conversation with Toni Cowan-Brown about cultural differences, tech and politics, Silicon Valley and Formula 1

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Episode details

For this new episode of the Building Bridges podcast, I’m delighted to share the (long) conversation I had with Toni Cowan-Brown, a European in Silicon Valley, whose newsletter I’ve followed since the beginning.

Toni is a true European at heart (albeit with a British passport) who’s lived and worked in San Francisco for a few years. She’s one of those few people who loves to compare and confront cultures the way I do. Perhaps it’s why we just couldn’t stop talking!

She used to work for a startup called NationBuilder which develops software for political campaigns. (She was in charge of its European expansion). And she continues to see herself as being at “the intersection of tech and politics”.

At this intersection we had a long chat about how she experienced the pandemic in San Francisco, her view of the US healthcare system and how the Valley was impacted by everything that happened in California and the world in 2020.

Toni has a weekly newsletter called Idée Fixe, a podcast called Unapologetic Women (with Sorcha Rochford), and Another Podcast (with Benedict Evans).

I hope you enjoy listening to this podcast! Do not hesitate to share it with your friends and colleagues! 🤗


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  • Also Building Bridges is part of a network of Substack newsletters, which you may want to discover: there’s Nicolas Colin’s European Straitsthere’s my Laetitia@Workand our French newsletter, Nouveau Départ.

(Credit: Franz Liszt, Angelus ! Prière Aux Anges Gardiens—extrait du disque Miroirs de Jonas Vitaud, NoMadMusic.)