Unlike some venture capitalists who sit on the boards of larger start-ups or well-established companies, Esther Dyson appears to prefer guiding smaller or newer entities. Dyson, who spearheads EDventures, participates on a number of boards, including consumer genetics firm 23andMe, Airship Ventures, Boxbe, Eventful.com, Evernote, Meetup, NewspaperDirect, Voxiva, WPP Group, and Yandex. In addition, Dyson -- who spent about six months training to become a cosmonaut -- sits on the Russian government's commission to establish a Russian Silicon Valley.
Dyson also was founding chairman of ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the international agency that sets policy for the Internet's technical standards and domain name system. She contributes money and time to emerging organizations such as the Santa Fe Institute, the Sunlight Foundation, StopBadware.org, and the Eurasia Foundation.