Institute of Future and Innovation Studies Director Lapenta Speaks at Harvard to Honor Dr. Alondra Nelson

The JCU Institute of Future and Innovation Studies‘ Director Francesco Lapenta was recently invited to speak at Harvard to honor Dr. Alondra Nelson at the AI World Society (AIWS) Award ceremony. 

Francesco Lapenta and Dr. Alondra Nelson
Francesco Lapenta and Dr. Alondra Nelson

Dr. Nelson, as Deputy Assistant to President Joe Biden and Acting Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), has provided guidance to local, state, and federal governments, multilateral and intergovernmental organizations, legislators, civil society, and others making strides for equity, integrity and open access. 

Dr. Nelson was nominated in the list of Ten People Who Shaped Science, by Nature

In 2023, she was included in the inaugural TIME100 list of the most influential people in Artificial Intelligence. She was also recently selected for the United Nations High-Level Advisory Body on Artificial Intelligence 

Dr. Nelson is the author of several books, including The Social Life of DNA (Beacon Press, 2016). 

Organized by the Boston Global Forum, the day featured presentations from esteemed leaders and academics: Professor Thomas Patterson, Governor Michael Dukakis, Tuan Nguyen (CEO of the Boston Global Forum and organizer of the event), Alex Sandy Pentland, Lily Tsai and Robert Mahari, Ami Fields-Meyer (Senior Policy Advisor at The White House), Yasuhide Nakayama, Minh Nguyen, Jeff Saviano, David Hall, and Paul Nemitz. 

In his congratulatory remarks to Dr. Nelson, Lapenta emphasized the fact that AI has the potential to further entrench the socio-economic divide existing between different regions of the world. And that the global governance of AI is necessary not only to protect from the associated risks of AI systems, but to create a vision and establish the guidelines for the fair development of AI to tackle inequalities and the complex and diverse challenges faced by the different regions of the world. Lapenta commanded her award as a fundamental step in closing the gap and gender divide and recognize the incredible achievements of women in Science.