Carnegie Mellon University

Aleecia McDonald

Dr. Aleecia M. McDonald

Associate Director, Privacy Engineering Program

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


Aleecia M. McDonald is the Associate Director for the Privacy Engineering program. She focuses on the public policy issues of internet privacy, including user expectations for privacy tools, behavioral economics and mental models of privacy, and the efficacy of industry self regulation. She co-chaired the WC3’s Tracking Protection Working Group, which was an effort to establish international standards for a Do Not Track mechanism that users can enable to request enhanced privacy online.

Dr. McDonald’s decade of experience working in software startups adds a practical focus to her academic work, and she was a senior privacy researcher for Mozilla prior to working as Director of Privacy at Stanford. Her findings have been featured in media outlets such as the Washington Post, Ars Technica, and NPR. She has presented findings in testimony to the California Assembly, and contributed to testimony before the United States Senate and the Federal Trade Commission. She holds a PhD in Engineering & Public Policy from Carnegie Mellon.