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IPR Spring 2024 Distinguished Lecture: Governing the Future: On AI, Public Policy, and Democracy

March 27, 2024

An award-winning scholar who served in the Biden administration, Alondra Nelson’s expertise sits at the intersection of science, technology, policy, and society.

Nelson’s research offers a critical and innovative approach to the social sciences in fruitful dialogue with other disciplines. Her major research contributions are situated at the juncture of racial formation and social citizenship, on the one hand, and emerging scientific and technological phenomena, on the other.

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She was formerly deputy assistant to President Joe Biden and acting director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). In this role, Nelson was the first African American and first woman of color to lead U.S. science and technology policy. At OSTP, she spearheaded the development of the "Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights," provided guidance to expand tax-payer access to federally funded research, served as an inaugural member of the Biden Cancer Cabinet, strengthened evidence-based policymaking, and galvanized a multisector strategy to advance equity and excellence in STEM, among other accomplishments.

Nelson is the Harold F. Linder Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study and a distinguished senior fellow at the Center for American Progress. She was named to Time Magazine’s list of the “100 Most Influential People in AI” in 2023.

Additional event sponsors are Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications, Northwestern's Department of Sociology and the Science in Human Culture Program.

Please email or call 847-491-3395 with questions about the event.