The Team

Johnny West, Founder of OpenOil

Johnny West is a social entrepreneur and writer with 20 years professional experience in and around the oil industry. He began covering energy markets as a Reuters correspondent in the Middle East in the early 1990s.

He has consulted to the United Nations, Revenue Watch Institute, Internews and others on oil and the public policy aspects of the industry and published in the Petroleum Economist, Iraq Oil Report, and Critical Resources as well as more general media like the Guardian and Huffington Post. He is a frequent guest commentator on broadcast outlets such as BBC Radio and TV, NPR, Sky News and Al Jazeera.

Since 2014, Johnny has been awarded a Shuttleworth Fellowship, in order to advance his efforts to bring an open data approach to natural resources.

His book Karama! Travels Through the Arab Spring, is the first book-length account to be published of the events now rocking the Middle East.

Johnny was a Classical scholar to Balliol College, Oxford and attended Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies. He speaks French and Arabic fluently, has worked in Persian and Spanish and gets by in Hebrew and German.

Contact: johnny.west[at]

Amrit Naresh, Research Consultant

Amrit Naresh has been a research consultant for OpenOil since October 2011. He has been involved in the OpenOil wiki projects with a special emphasis on East Africa and Iraq, and has contributed advocacy work on the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in the United States. He also blogs on each of these topics. He has led MediaWiki trainings in Baghdad and Kampala, as a consultant with Uganda Radio Network (URN).

Amrit graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a BA (Hons) in Comparative Literature and German Intellectual History.

Contact: amrit.naresh[at]

Anton Rühling, Program Associate

Anton Rühling joined OpenOil in January 2014 (after a short-term assignment to Egypt in 2013). He has been involved in the corporate network pilots on Nigeria and BP and is leading future corporate mapping projects.

His research interests include the energy industries of MENA countries. He has designed and coordinated workshops on the extractive industries with members of civil society in Cairo, Tunis and Dar es Salam.

Anton has studied Contemporary History and Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Freiburg, Freie Universität Berlin and at the University of Alexandria, Egypt. He gets by in Arabic and tries his best with Swahili.

Contact: anton.ruehling[at]


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