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Adam  Penenberg

Adam Penenberg

Journalism Professor at NYU & Editor of PandoDaily


A well-known name in journalism, Adam L. Penenberg is not afraid to push boundaries and promote higher editorial standards. As a journalism professor at New York University and editor of PandoDaily, he has successfully navigated through the world of print and online media, providing his own unique theories, ideas, and opinions about the transitions along the way. In 1998 when Penenberg was an editor at Forbes.com, he garnered national attention for unmasking serial fabricator Stephen Glass of The New Republic. His story became a major turning point for online investigative journalism and has since been retold in the film “Shattered Glass” (Steve Zahn portrays Penenberg). Read More >

Penenberg has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, CNN’s American Morning and Money Line, ABC World News and News Now, FoxNews, MSNBC, CNBC, NPR, the BBC, and been quoted for his knowledge on media and technology in The New York TimesWashington Post, Christian Science Monitor, Wired News, Ad Age, Marketwatch, Politico, and many others.

The author of seven books, Penenberg has proven himself an authority on investigative reporting. His first book, Spooked, paints a picture of modern day corporate America, filled with stories that unravel the truth behind the corporate intelligence industry. His second, Tragic Indifference, was optioned for the movies by Michael Douglas and excerpted in USA Today. His other books include the highly acclaimed Viral Loop, and two novels: Virtually True and Trial & Terror. His newest release, Play at Work, is a fascinating look at how games can help us learn, create, and innovate across all markets.  

Penenberg is the assistant director of the Business & Economic Program at NYU and heads the department’s ethics committee. He teaches hard news reporting, long-form narrative and entrepreneurial journalism to graduate and undergraduate students. As a speaker, his thought-provoking talks are ideal for audiences in the healthcare, corporate and media industries, as well as for schools and colleges. Penenberg is a seasoned presenter, who is not only highly entertaining and informative, he helps listeners discover new learning strategies by providing them with tools to improve services, online presence, goal setting and ways to think innovatively in today’s business world. Read Less ^

Speech Topics

Play at Work: How Games Inspire Breakthrough Thinking

Games and game design have been seeping into all aspects of our lives. Corporations, such as Google, Microsoft, Cisco, UPS, Nissan, Ford and Salesforce are using games to better engage and train workers, create new products and improve customer service. Gamification is also catalyzing scientific discovery and revolutionizing healthcare and medicine. Based on award-winning journalist Adam Penenberg’s latest book, this presentation shows how smart game design is taking hold in virtually every sector in the economy, and how the companies and organizations that apply it are witnessing unprecedented results.

Viral Loop: From Twitter to Facebook, How Today’s Smartest Companies Grew Themselves

Many of the most successful Web 2.0 companies, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, eBay, Paypal and Skype are prime examples of what journalist Adam L. Penenberg calls a “viral loop”: To use it, you have to spread it. The result: Never before has there been the potential to create wealth this fast, on this scale, and starting with so little. In this game-changing speech, Penenberg tells the fascinating story of the entrepreneurs who first harnessed the unprecedented potential of viral loops to create the successful online businesses — some worth billions of dollars — that we have all grown to rely on.

Gaming Healthcare: How Games are Revolutionizing Medicine, Health and Rehabilitation

The gamification of healthcare is a hot topic. Simulations have become a routine part of medicine in surgery and in training. For example, so-called “serious” games are influencing diabetics to take their medicine and follow healthier diets. With Wii-hab, the painful drudgery of traditional physical therapy is transformed into an enjoyable experience. In this speech, journalist Adam Penenberg takes you on a journey through this game-infused world.

Stephen Glass & Shattered Glass: Anatomy of a Journalism Scandal

In one of the biggest journalism scandals in history, a young reporter fabricates more than 40 stories published in The New Republic, Harper’s, and Rolling Stone. It ends up as a critically acclaimed movie, Shattered Glass, and vaults Adam Penenberg, the man who broke the story, into a star. In this highly entertaining talk, Penenberg shares behind-the-scenes stories and insights never before revealed, and turns his critical klieg lights on the inner ethics of journalism, where almost nothing is what it seems.

The Future of the Book

eBooks are simply a stopgap measure to something much greater. Soon, mere words on a page or screen will not be enough. Author and journalism professor Adam Penenberg explains why the books of today will look nothing like the books of tomorrow.