A Conversation with Alondra Nelson
Join the Institute for Public Knowledge for a conversation with Alondra Nelson, featuring Eric Klinenberg, on October 11th at 5:30 pm. The two will discuss policymaking and Nelson’s work in the Biden Administration.
Alondra Nelson is the Harold F. Linder Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study and a distinguished senior fellow at the Center for American Progress. As former deputy assistant to President Joe Biden, she served as principal deputy director for science and society and acting director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). She was the first African American and first woman of color to lead OSTP. Including her in the list of Ten People Who Shaped Science in 2022, Nature said of Nelson, “this social scientist made strides for equity, integrity and open access.”
Nelson’s work at OSTP drove Biden-Harris Administration strategy to create policy that expands economic opportunity, protects civil rights, enhances security, advances equity, and ensures emerging science and technologies work for, not against, our democratic values. During her tenure performing the duties of director, Nelson led a team writing the landmark Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights, which lays the groundwork for policymakers, technology developers and others to better safeguard people’s rights as algorithms and AI reach further into our lives.
An acclaimed social scientist, Nelson writes and lectures widely on the intersections of science, technology, medicine, and social inequality. She is the author of several books, including The Social Life of DNA. Her essays, reviews, and commentary have been featured in national and international media outlets including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Wired and Science. Nelson is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Philosophical Society, the Council of Foreign Relations, and the National Academy of Medicine.
Eric Klinenberg is Helen Gould Shepard Professor of Social Science and Director of the Institute for Public Knowledge at New York University. He is the author of Palaces for the People: How Social Infrastructure Can Help Fight Inequality, Polarization, and the Decline of Civic Life (Crown, 2018), Going Solo: The Extraordinary Rise and Surprising Appeal of Living Alone (The Penguin Press, 2012), Fighting for Air: The Battle to Control America’s Media (Metropolitan Books, 2007), and Heat Wave: A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago (University of Chicago Press, 2002), and co-author, with Aziz Ansari, of the New York Times #1 bestseller Modern Romance (The Penguin Press, 2015). His scholarly work has been published in journals including the American Sociological Review, Theory and Society, and Ethnography, and he has contributed to The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, Rolling Stone, and This American Life.