Connect with Lee Rainie

Lee Rainie

Director, Imagining the Digital Future Center
Elon University
former Director, Pew Research Center

Picture of Lee RainieLee Rainie is the Director of Elon University's Imagining the Digital Future Center, an initiative that works to discover and broadly share a diverse range of opinions, ideas and original research about the impact of digital change, informing important conversations and policy formation.

He assumed that role in early 2024 after serving 24 years as the founding director of Internet and Technology research at the Pew Research Center, a non-profit, non-partisan "fact tank."

At the Pew Internet Project, his team produced more than 850 reports about the social, political and economic impact of four technology revolutions: the internet/broadband revolution, the mobile connectivity revolution, the social media revolution, and the artificial intelligence revolution.

His Project was described by the American Sociological Association as the “most authoritative source of reliable data on the use and impact of the internet and mobile connectivity,” and the ASA awarded him its prize for “excellence in the reporting on social issues award.” His work has been covered by network and cable news and every major global news publication.

Lee is co-author of “Networked: The New Social Operating System” and five books about the future of the internet, based on Project surveys.

Prior to his work at Pew, Rainie was managing editor of the newsweekly magazine U.S. News & World Report and he previously covered American politics for several publications.

 

That project was described by the American Sociological Association as the “most authoritative source of reliable data on the use and impact of the internet and mobile connectivity” and the ASA awarded Rainie its award for “excellence in the reporting on social issues award.” 

The Pew project has issued more than 850 reports based on its surveys that examine people’s online activities and the impact of mobile connectivity and social media on their lives.

Lee is a co-author of Networking: The New Social Operating System, a book about the social impact of the internet and mobile technology. He is also co-author of five books about the future of the internet, which are based on Center surveys. 

Prior to launching the Pew Internet Project, Lee was managing editor of the newsweekly magazine U.S. News & World Report. He is a graduate of Harvard University and has a master's degree in political science from Long Island University.

 

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