People

We have an interdisciplinary team with backgrounds that include machine learning & AI, interaction design, cognitive science, child development & education, journalism, marketing, and constitutional law.

 

 

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LECTURER AND SENIOR ADVISOR
PREETA BANSAL
Preeta was Solicitor General of the State of New York, General Counsel & Senior Policy Advisor in the Obama White House for the Office of Management and Budget, a global general counsel for HSBC, and Chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. She is currently also a Visiting Scholar at Harvard Law School.
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MASTERS STUDENT
ERIC CHU
Eric received a BS in Electrical Engineering & Computer Science from the University of California Berkeley. His interests include (large-scale) machine learning and artificial intelligence.
MASTERS STUDENT
NABEEL GILLANI
Nabeel has a background in computer science, machine learning, and education. Before LSM, he was a Product Manager at Khan Academy and helped build the digital internships platform Coursolve.org.
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VISITING SCHOLAR
ALLEN GORIN
Allen invented AT&T’s “How May I Help You?” voice natural language technology, deployed nationally in 2001 and handling millions of callers each month. He is an IEEE Fellow, recipient of the AT&T Science & Technology Medal and the AT&T Strategic Patent Award. He then led research into exploiting the fusion of content and network context. He is also affiliated with the JHU HLT CoE.
PhD STUDENT
ANNELI HERSHMAN
Anneli has a BA in Psychology from San Diego State University and a MA in Child Development from Tufts University, specializing in literacy and technology. She is passionate about using educational technology to merge reading brain research with its applications, using creative, interactive mediums that empower every learner to explore his/her educational potential.
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VISITING RESEARCHER
ANDREW HEYWARD — @andrewheyward
Andrew is a nationally recognized news executive and expert on the changing media landscape. He is an award-winning television news producer who served as President of CBS News from January 1996 to November 2005.
MASTERS STUDENT
SNEHA PRISCILLA MAKINI
Sneha studied Computer Science Engineering while in Bangalore, India and has been involved in the open-source tech community. More recently, she worked on developing social games at Zynga.
PhD STUDENT
JULIANA NAZARÉ — @ju1es_
Juliana has a BSc in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Olin College of Engineering and an MS from the Media Lab focused on how technology can help immigrant parents learn English together with their children. Her research interests include peer-learning environments and how families can help facilitate their child(ren)’s learning.
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SENIOR ADMINISTRATOR
HEATHER PIERCE
Heather completed a BS in Marketing Communications at Emerson College and is Senior Administrator to Social Machines and assistant to Professor Deb Roy.
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RESEARCH SCIENTIST
William is an award-winning media critic and New York Times bestselling author, and was director of The Crowdwire project. At Social Machines he’s developing new tools for social discourse.
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DIRECTOR
Deb is an associate professor at the MIT Media Lab, and Chief Media Scientist at Twitter.
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PhD STUDENT
MARTIN SAVESKI — @msaveski
A first-year graduate student at Social Machines, Martin received a Master in Data Mining and Knowledge Management from University Pierre and Marie Curie (Paris VI) and Polytechnic University of Catalonia. Martin’s research interests include large-scale machine learning, network analysis and natural language processing.
PhD STUDENT
NAZMUS SAQUIB
Nazmus Saquib received a BA (Physics and Computing) and MS (Computational Mathematics) before coming to the MIT Media Lab. Saquib is interested in designing sensors to instrument educational environments, and also in applications of mathematical modeling, machine learning, and data visualization to understand and empower human networks.
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GRADUATE RESEARCHER
ALEX SIEGENFELD
Alex received undergraduate degrees in physics and mathematics from
MIT, and remained at MIT to pursue a PhD in theoretical condensed
matter physics.  He is interested in applying physical concepts and
reasoning to better understand social and political networks.
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DEPLOYMENT LEAD
RUSSELL STEVENS — @ras0046
Russell received a Master in Public Policy from Harvard prior to a career in communications strategy. He focuses on research planning and deployment at Social Machines.
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PhD STUDENT
IVAN SYSOEV
Ivan received a Master in Computer Science from Georgia Tech and is interested in artificial intelligence and human cognition at Social Machines.
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PhD STUDENT
PRASHANTH VIJAYARAGHAVAN
Prashanth is a PhD student with Social Machines. He has a Bachelor of Engineering from Anna University in India. His interests include building applications that involve machine learning and neural networks.
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POSTDOCTORAL ASSOCIATE
Soroush Vosoughi is postdoctoral associate at Social Machines working on models of information propagation on social media. For his Ph.D., at the Laboratory for Social Machines at MIT, he developed algorithms for automatic detection and verification of rumors on social media. Soroush’s research interests include natural language processing, machine learning and complex systems. Soroush received his Ph.D., M.Sc, and Sc.B. from MIT.
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NARRATIVE TECHNOLOGIST
JOHN WEST
John tells stories with words, data, code, and music. He is obsessed with the way technology is digesting the world. A data journalist at the Lab, he is also an MFA candidate in nonfiction at Bennington College, and he graduated with degrees in music and philosophy from Oberlin College and Conservatory.
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DEPLOYMENT STRATEGIST
EUGENE YI
Eugene Yi was the Head of East Asia Public Policy for Twitter. Previously, Eugene worked for the U.S. Department of State at Embassy Beijing and the Office of the Secretary of Defense in the U.S. Department of Defense. He graduated with honors from Princeton University with a Bachelor’s and a Master in Public Affairs degree in the Woodrow Wilson School of International and Public Affairs.
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MASTERS STUDENT
ANN YUAN
Ann has worked in advertising and educational technology. She studied philosophy at Georgetown University.
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GRADUATE RESEARCHER
VICKY ZEAMER
Vicky Zeamer is currently a graduate student in Comparative Media Studies at MIT. She is using her experience in design research and strategy to focus her thesis work on how digital media and computing are changing the ways in which users experience food. Previously, Vicky graduated from Wellesley College where she studied Media Arts and Sciences (think HCI + design) & American Studies.
UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH ASSISTANT
HELEN ZHOU
Helen has worked with LSM for the past two year as a UROP (Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program) contributing to many projects including Electome and Foodome.