Expanding our team at AI Now


April 13, 2018

It’s been a busy time for AI Now! In just the last month, we released new research, including a major study of how governments might use algorithmic impact assessments (AIAs), gave evidence at the European Commission high-level hearing on AI policy in Brussels, spoke at the UN in New York, and met with President Macron and his team in Paris to discuss the international AI ecosystem.

And our team continues to grow! We are excited to announce that Rashida Richardson will be joining us from the NYCLU to be our Director of Policy Research. We wanted to formally introduce Rashida along with some of the other new members of our team, and share a bit about what they will be working on.

As the Director of Policy Research, Rashida will help drive AI Now’s commitment to understanding AI’s implications for governmental policy and affected communities. In this role, Rashida will design, implement, and coordinate AI Now’s research strategy and initiatives on the topics of law, policy, and civil rights. This research will engage the most pressing concerns among policymakers, advocates, and communities most affected by AI and related technologies as they are integrated into our everyday lives. Rashida joins AI Now after working as Legislative Counsel at the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU), the New York state affiliate of the ACLU, where she led the organization’s work on privacy, technology, surveillance, and education issues.

We are thrilled to welcome our inaugural postdoctoral cohort that will begin in September of 2018. After months of interviewing an incredible roster of candidates, we hired three postdoctoral researchers. Individually, they each bring top-tier scholarship and expertise. As a cohort, they represent a variety of approaches to investigating the social implications of AI–furthering our mission to develop an interdisciplinary field focused on these issues. Sarah Myers West joins us from the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, and will be examining the politics of diversity and inclusion in technological communities, with an emphasis on AI, gender, and intersectionality. Elizabeth Kaziunas comes from the University of Michigan, and will focus on algorithmic decision-making and machine learning in healthcare and care work. And Roel Dobbe will be coming to us from UC Berkeley, and researching the role of AI in safety-critical infrastructure.

Finally, we’ve officially launched our Research Affiliate program, which aims to expand and advance the field of AI research through novel and creative approaches, methodologies, and interventions. As part of this program, we have brought on our first Artist Fellows: Heather Dewey Hagborg and Trevor Paglen. Heather and Trevor are field-leading, internationally recognized artists, and their work offers new ways to understand the role of technology in society. Heather’s biopolitical art has been exhibited around the world, and most recently she used forensic DNA phenotyping to make portraits of Chelsea Manning. Trevor Paglen’s work spans issues of surveillance, artificial intelligence, and communications infrastructure, and he was recently awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. We are thrilled to be collaborating with them over the two year span of their fellowship with us.

You can read more about our growing research community on our people page.

As always, we want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to everyone who continues to support our team and our mission. There is much work to do, and we couldn’t do it without you. Onward!

Kate, Meredith and the AI Now team