Virtual Discussion

Co-Opting AI: Reproduction

11/11 Thursday | 6pm

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NYU’s Institute for Public Knowledge, the NYU Center for Responsible AI, the 370 Jay Project, and the NYU Tandon Department of Technology, Culture and Society invite you to a discussion on religion in the series “Co-Opting AI.

This event will explore how AI technologies have changed the narratives and rationalities that underpin assisted reproduction, from early feminist initiatives to the commercialization of pregnancy, as well as the tactics used in scientific research on human reproduction. It will consider how these dynamics map onto racial disparities and wider inequalities in public health and beyond.

Charis Thompson is Chancellor’s Professor and Associate Dean for Campus Partnerships, and a former founding director of the Science, Technology, and Society Center at UC Berkeley. She is an expert on the ethics of reproductive technologies and stem cell research. She read philosophy, psychology, and physiology at Oxford University, and got her Ph.D. from the Science Studies program at UC San Diego.  She is the author of Making Parents: The Ontological Choreography of Reproductive Technologies, which won the 2007 Rachel Carson Award from the Society for the Social Study of Science, and of Good Science: The Ethical Choreography of Stem Cell Research. She is a recipient of the Social Science Division Distinguished Teaching Award and an Honorary Doctorate for Services to Science and Society from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. Last year she was Visiting Professor at the Princeton Institute for Advanced Study, co-convening the seminar on Science and the State. She served on the World Economic Forum Global Future Council on Technology, Values, and Policy, and the Nuffield Working Group on Human Genome Modification.

Natali Valdez is an anthropologist who specializes in feminist and ethnographic methodologies. Her work lies at the intersections of feminist techno-science, medical anthropology, and public health. Her teaching and research attend to how histories of violence and racism are enveloped into scientific knowledge production. She draws from Black feminism and postcolonial feminist science studies to explore the entanglements between nature-culture, science-society, and the human-nonhuman.  Her current book project, Weighing the Future explores the clinical translation of epigenetics in randomized clinical trials that experiment on pregnant bodies. As the first ethnography of its kind, Weighing the Future illuminates how processes of postgenomic knowledge production are linked to capitalism, surveillance, and systemic racism.  Her other research interests explore issues of big data in evidence-based medicine; feminist materiality in environmental racism; and the creative ways in which feminist and ethnographic methods can be used to study scientific methods.

Mona Sloane is a sociologist working on design and inequality, specifically in the context of AI design and policy. She is a Senior Research Scientist at the NYU Center for Responsible AI, an Adjunct Professor at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering, a Fellow with NYU’s Institute for Public Knowledge (IPK) and The GovLab, and the Director of the *This Is Not A Drill* program on technology, inequality and the climate emergency at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She is principal investigator on multiple research projects on AI and society, and holds an affiliation with the Tübingen AI Center at the University of Tübingen in Germany. Mona also is the convenor of the IPK Co-Opting AI series and serves as editor of the technology section at Public Books. Follow her on Twitter @mona_sloane.

The Co-Opting AI event series is convened by Mona Sloane. They are hosted at IPK and co-sponsored by the 370 Jay Project, the NYU Center for Responsible AI, and the NYU Tandon Department of Technology, Culture and Society.

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