Beth Simone Noveck directs the Governance Lab (GovLab) and its MacArthur Research Network on Opening Governance. She is a Professor in Technology, Culture, and Society at New York University’s Tandon School of Engineering. Her current research focuses on “people-led innovation,” namely the ability of communities and institutions to work together to solve problems more effectively and legitimately.More keyboard_arrow_down
Stefaan G. Verhulst is Co-Founder and Chief Research and Development Officer of the Governance Laboratory @NYU (GovLab) where he is responsible for building a research foundation on how to transform governance using advances in science and technology. Verhulst’s latest scholarship centers on how technology can improve people’s lives and the creation of more effective and collaborative forms of governance. Specifically, he is interested in the perils and promise of collaborative technologies and how to harness the unprecedented volume of information to advance the public good.More keyboard_arrow_down
Dinorah Cantú-Pedraza coordinates the GovLab Academy, an online institute aimed at helping government and social innovators take innovative projects from idea to implementation. Under her direction, the Academy has worked with over five hundred innovators from more than 30 countries online and off over the last two years. Thousands more have watched its skill-building videos. She has put together over 12 Coaching Programs, the Academy’s signature mentoring and peer to peer learning initiative, where over 95% of whose participants complete the program. The Academy is a project of the Governance Lab, based at New York University. GovLab focuses on the use of technology to improve how we govern.More keyboard_arrow_down
Akash Kapur is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab. Akash has consulted for a variety of organizations (including UNDP and The Markle Foundation) on issues including Internet governance, the digital divide, open data, and health IT. He is a former columnist for the International New York Times, and has written for, among other publications, The Atlantic, Bloomberg Businessweek, The Economist, The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Time magazine.
Akash is the author of a book, India Becoming: A Portrait of Life in Modern India (Riverhead, 2012), named by The New Yorker and The New Republic a book of the year; by Newsweek one of its three must-reads on modern India; and selected as an Editors' Choice by the New York Times Book Review.
Akash has a BA in Anthropology from Harvard College, and a DPhil in media law and policy from Oxford University (Nuffield College), which he attended as a Rhodes Scholar. His research at Oxford focused on issues related to access and the digital divide.
Andrew Young is the Knowledge Director at The GovLab, where he leads research efforts focusing on the impact of technology on public institutions. Among the grant-funded projects he has directed are a global assessment of the impact of open government data; comparative benchmarking of government innovation efforts against those of other countries; a methodology for leveraging corporate data to benefit the public good; and crafting the experimental design for testing the adoption of technology innovations in federal agencies.
Andrew is the author of extended work on how public sector institutions use new technology to coordinate work and developed original public resources, including GovLab’s Selected Readings on a variety of topics and its Twitter Lists of governance innovation areas.
He is also the Network Coordinator of the GovLab-chaired MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Opening Governance. In this role, he plans and organizes collaborative research projects and events with the Network’s members, post-docs, and advisory group who span a dozen disciplines and institutions. Andrew works closely with GovLab civic technology team and has led the design of the Network of Innovators skill sharing network for civil servants and the Open Governance Research Exchange (OGRX), a collaborative project of the GovLab, World Bank, and mySociety to develop a platform for accessing and sharing original research on governance innovation.
In his role as Knowledge Director, Andrew seeks to make GovLab’s research more accessible and actionable, and provides research and writing support to all members of GovLab’s team and to its extended network of participants in GovLab’s training programs.
Andrew earned his Master’s degree in the Media, Culture and Communication department of NYU’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, with a focus on Technology and Society. His Master’s thesis explored the use of data-tracking technologies on congressional campaign websites to inform microtargeting efforts.
Before arriving at the GovLab, Andrew worked with Chief of Research Stefaan Verhulst at the Markle Foundation, where his research centered on the use of technology to bolster economic security.
Prior to his graduate work at NYU, Andrew attended Pennsylvania State University and Goldsmiths College, University of London, where he studied English and Communications. His writings can be found at the GovLab Blog, Opening Governance Research Network Blog, the Social Science Research Network, Open Government Partnership blog, GrantCraft, and Governing, among others. He tweets at @_AndrewYoung.
Anirudh Dinesh conducts research on governance innovation. He is a member of the team designing and piloting experiments for new models of public engagement, what the GovLab calls people-led innovation, to improve the legitimacy and effectiveness of policy making and solve urgent problems.
In addition, Anirudh is a member of the Data Labs research team looking at how governments can create the infrastructure, including the necessary skills and governance rules, to facilitate the use of administrative data for evaluating and improving public programs. With a grant from Markets for Good, he is collaborating with New Philanthropy Capital in the UK to craft a series of case studies about Data Labs and explore how they can enable charities as well as government to conduct more data-driven impact evaluations.
Last year, Anirudh helped to research, write and produce ten original Smarter State case studies, focusing on how governments can use technology to leverage the skills of civil servants. He has also researched and authored reports on Open Data for Developing Economies, a project to explore the social and economic impact of opening government data.
In his job, Anirudh organizes events at the GovLab. He was part of the organizing team of the Collective Intelligence Conference (June 2017). He has coordinated multiple online classes and coaching programs for the GovLab Academy, including the ones on innovations in tech-enabled disaster management and data driven criminal justice.
Whether in connection with events or research projects, Anirudh applies his background in computer science to help create high impact websites. He is a part of GovLab’s civic tech efforts and assists in the design and development of all of GovLab’s original tools and platforms.
Prior to joining GovLab, Anirudh co-produced TEDxBNMIT 2015, an independently organized TEDx event in Bangalore, India.
Anirudh holds a master’s degree in Computer Engineering from New York University and an undergraduate degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering from the Visvesvaraya Technological University in India. While studying there, he interned at the Defence Research and Development Organization, where he implemented the autonomous indoor navigation of a quadcopter.
Anirudh is an avid blogger and his writings can be found at www.dudurudh.com.
Anita M. McGahan is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab. She is Professor and Rotman Chair in Management at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. She is cross appointed to the Munk School of Global Affairs and the Physiology Department of the Medical School; is Senior Associate at the Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness at Harvard University; is the Chief Economist in the Division of Health and Human Rights at the Massachusetts General Hospital; and is President of the Academy of Management. In 2013, she was elected by the Academy of Management’s 18,000+ membership to the Board of Governors and into the Presidency rotation. The Academy is the world’s largest organization of business-school professors and scholars. In 2014, she joined the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Opening Governance. During her 2010-2015 appointment as the Director of Toronto’s PhD Program and as the Associate Dean of Research, the School’s PhD and research rankings internationally increased from #11 to #4 and #17 to #3, respectively.
McGahan earned both her PhD and AM at Harvard University in two years. She holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School, where she received highest academic honors as a Baker Scholar, and a BA from Northwestern University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She also spent several years at both McKinsey & Company and Morgan Stanley & Company and was previously on the faculties of both Harvard Business School and Boston University. She has visited the Stanford Graduate School of Business, the London Business School, the Australian Graduate School of Management, and the Division of Social Medicine and Global Health at Harvard Medical School.
McGahan’s credits include three books and over 100 articles, case studies, notes and other published material on competitive advantage, industry evolution, and financial performance. Her current research emphasizes entrepreneurship in the public interest and innovative collaboration between public and private organizations. She is also pursuing a long-standing interest in how firms overcome industry disruption to achieve breakthrough performance. Her recent work emphasizes innovation in the governance of technology to improve global health. McGahan has been recognized as a master teacher for her dedication to the success of junior faculty and for her leadership in course development. In 2010, she was awarded the Academy of Management BPS Division’s Irwin Distinguished Educator Award and, in 2012, the Academy conferred on McGahan its Career Distinguished Educator Award for her championship of reform in the core curriculum of Business Schools. In 2012 she was elected a Fellow of the Strategic Management Society, and in 2015 she was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Management.
Ayushi Roy is a graduate student in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT. Ayushi is building out GovLab’s Data Stewardship Network to help harness the potential of private data toward public ends.
Claudio Mendonca is the Creative Director at the GovLab where he is responsible for branding and interaction design of the digital projects. Working as a visual communicator for more than 10 years, he earned his Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design in 2005. He has extensive experience in branding and interaction design, including 3 years developing graphical material for several government institutions in Brazil, publications and interface design for startups.
Outside of his work at The GovLab, Claudio also designs webapps for the Centre of Direct Democracy and works as a design consultant for the World Bank Institute for several open gov projects such as Open Government, Open Contracting, Open Development and Technology Alliance. He can be found at http://claudiomendonca.ca/.
Dane Gambrell is a junior studying Sustainable Urban Environments at NYU Tandon School of Engineering. He is researching case studies of public participation in lawmaking as part of the GovLab’s CrowdLaw project.
Daniella Heard is a graduate student at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs, specializing in Technology, Economic Development and Public Policy. Daniella is working on GovLab’s data projects. In particular, the potential of distributed ledger technologies for governance of the extractives industry.
David is a Senior Advisor at the GovLab. He brings deep experience in politics, policy and management - having served and advised a President, Vice President, three governors and three big-city mayors. He worked as a communications aide in President Clinton’s White House; was Vice President Al Gore’s press secretary in California for the 2000 presidential campaign; served in a variety of policy roles for the governors of California, Pennsylvania and Washington; and served under the mayors of New York, San Francisco and Oakland. He was chief of staff to Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums, managing some 50 city and state agency heads, and representing the mayor in carrying out important city initiatives, including the analysis and implementation of the Mayor’s Advisory Task Force Groups, an unprecedented level of civic engagement from community leaders that led to over 40 reports and recommendations for the city of Oakland. Currently, David works for the chancellor of the University of California Berkeley as a Senior Advisor managing policy development, external stakeholder engagement and overall communications strategies.
Francesca De Chiara is a Visiting Fellow at the GovLab. Based in Trento at Fondazione Bruno Kessler's Center for Information and Communication Technology, she is the co-founder of the first Italian node of the Open Data Institute in Trento. She holds a PhD in Sociology and Social Research from the University of Salerno (IT). Her dissertation – The World Bank: knowledge, technology and development in a multilateral institution – focused on the role of the World Bank as a knowledge producer, by analyzing the organizational transformation during Wolfensohn presidency, the launch of the online aid-management platform powered by the Bank, and the implementation of the Development Gateway web portal.
She has been Visiting Research Fellow at Dept. of Development Sociology/Polson Institute for Global Development – Cornell University in 2009-2010, working under the supervision of Philip McMichael, and visiting doctoral student at the University of Warwick – Warwick Business School, where she joined the Public Policy Group led by prof. Colin Crouch in 2006-2007. She has research experience in the field of open data, open government and development studies and is mainly interested in analyzing the impact and the actual reuse of open data. In this context, she has presented papers at international conferences, organized workshops and training courses. She has also lectured at LUISS University in Rome. She is part of the Open Knowledge Network, collaborates in bottom-up initiatives focused on crowdsourcing and civic monitoring, like Monithon. She’s editor of the Open Knowledge Italian official blog, author of academic articles and lately referee for the European Journal of Political Research. Last accepted paper to be presented at CES Conference in Paris, July 2015, will be focused on the value of open data for the European Cohesion. She has served as country reviewer for the first edition of the Open Data Barometer, a research report by the Web Foundation and the Open Data Institute. She has translated the Open Data Certificates (now in Beta) in Italian in 2014, organized the first edition of the contest Trentino Open Data Challenge, and is responsible for the open data related activities within the EU FP7-funded Finodex project, an accelerator for SMEs and Web entrepreneurs that make use of both existing open data-sets and the platform FiWare. Since February 2013, she has worked at the Trentino Open Data project, resulting in the launch of the open government data catalog dati.trentino.it.
Fred DeJohn is the Chief Financial Officer at GovLab. Fred is an attorney with extensive experience in finance, budget and human resources in both government and higher education. Prior to joining the GovLab, Fred served as the Acting Vice President for Human Resources at the Fashion Institute of Technology. Before that, he spent more than eighteen years as the Vice President for Finance and Administration at New York Law School.
Fred's earlier career was with New York City government where he held high level positions in a number of City agencies, including Deputy Commissioner for Finance and Administration at the Department of Housing, Preservation and Development, First Deputy Commissioner at the Department of General Services and First Deputy Director at the Department of Personnel. He finished his City service as a Special Assistant to Mayor David Dinkins, focusing on municipal labor issues.
Gabriella (Gabby) researches, designs, and advocates for public participation in lawmaking (“crowdlaw”). She is pursuing a JD/MBA at the Yale Law School and Yale School of Management. Her work includes completing a global survey of legislative initiatives that use crowdlaw to improve the effectiveness of legislative procedure and outcomes. She is also tracking public engagement legislation and collaborating with researchers at Harvard University to develop a model legal framework for institutionalizing public engagement. She believes that crowdlaw can help communities to make more informed, effective, and democratic decisions.
Previously, Gabby was a Project Manager at Locus Analytics/Syntax Funds, a data analytics and investment management firm, where she built data organization structures for risk stratification in portfolio management and community development. She also has experience in intellectual property strategy, fleet management technology, as well as in the Colombian public and nonprofit sectors. A graduate of Swarthmore College, she studied political science, Latin American studies, and spatial analytics for public policy. Gabby is fluent in Spanish. She tweets @crowdlawyale.
Gianpaolo Baiocchi is a senior fellow at the GovLab. He is sociologist and an ethnographer interested in questions of politics and culture, critical social theory, and cities. He has written about and continues to research instances of actually existing civic life and participatory democracy. Gianpaolo is associate professor of individualized studies and sociology at NYU, where he directs the Gallatin School’s Urban Democracy Lab, which promotes radically democratic praxis and reflection, and is an important reference in New York City’s Left. Gianpaolo is recognized as one of the leading experts on participatory budgeting, and participatory democracy more generally, a topic he has researched and written extensively about both in the context of his native Brazil but also in terms of its global travel. He continues to research the intersection of left-wing party politics and radical democracy, often directly engaged with, and learning from Brazil’s Workers’ Party. His books on Porto Alegre’s administration under the PT, and on the first PT administrations in Brazil are international references. His last book, with Ernesto Ganuza, is called Popular Democracy and the Paradox of Participation, and some of his political commentary can be found in Boston Review. He is today most active with the Right To The City Alliance and the Homes For All national campaign.
Gina Joerger is a rising sophomore majoring in Computer Science at NYU Shanghai. Gina is researching various international CrowdLaw case studies to analyze its functionality, and is participating in the NYU Tandon Undergraduate Summer Research Program.
Joel Urena is a rising junior majoring in Integrated Digital Media at the Tandon School of Engineering. Joel is working on the ‘Solving Public Problems with Data’ project at the GovLab.
John Harlow is a Visiting Fellow at the GovLab. He is a postdoctoral scholar in the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Opening Governance at the Arizona State University School for the Future of Innovation in Society. He researches strategic intervention points for process innovation in governance. John is currently working on the RWJF grant "Opening pathways for discovery, research, and innovation in health and healthcare." His prior work includes designing the workshop that produced the first draft of Phoenix's 2050 transportation plan, and Reinvent Phoenix’s public outreach to inform rezoning around Phoenix's light rail.
Kajol Char is a senior majoring in economics and minoring in human rights at the University of Chicago. Kajol is researching the future of work, looking into the social and economic effects of automation, artificial intelligence, and other technological developments.
Lauren Yu is the Director of Operations at The GovLab. She holds a Masters Degree in Social Work from Columbia University where she focused on advanced clinical practice in health, mental health, and disabilities. She has worked in schools, hospitals, and community mental health centers where her target populations have included at-risk children, transplant patients, and homeless mentally ill adults. Lauren earned a BA in psychology from Occidental College.
Prior to joining The GovLab team, Lauren was living in Kathmandu, Nepal where she started a counseling program serving 1st-12th grade students. She also created the school’s service learning program involving middle school and high students in community service projects throughout Kathmandu and in surrounding rural villages.
Leonardo Ferreira de Oliveira is a Visiting Researcher at The GovLab, where he focuses on how open data can create public value in the justice field. He is a Ph.D. candidate in Administration at the University of Brasília (UnB), with a research focus on innovation and strategy in justice systems. He also holds a B.A. and M.A. in Administration, both from UnB, where has participated in several research groups, including Innovation in Organizations of Justice and Strategic Use of Open Data. Since 2012, Leonardo has also worked as a lecturer for graduate and postgraduate courses in Public Administration and Management within the main universities of Brazil’s Federal District.
Leonardo’s career in the public sector has spanned more than 13 years. Most recently, he served as Advisor for Innovation and Information Management at the Federal Justice Council. During his tenure at the Council, from 2014 to 2017, he led the Federal Justice’s Observatory initiative, a unified repository for transparency, collaboration and dynamic monitoring of the corporate strategy of Brazil’s Federal Justice system. The Observatory was recognized as one of the best management practices in Federal Justice in 2016 and had more than 320,000 page views in its first two years of operation. Leonard was also the technical co-founder of the Federal Network of Innovation in the Public Sector of Brazil, which includes more than 80 agencies. The initiative started as an agreement between presidents of the Federal Justice Council, Federal Court of Accounts, and Ministry of Planning, Budget and Modernization, and represents synergy around an innovation agenda among Brazil’s judicial, legislative and executive arms of government.
Previously, Leonardo served as an analyst and advisor to the General Director of the Superior Court of Elections - TSE, from 2007 to 2014, and again in 2017. He worked on monitoring the strategic management of the Court, especially in the formulation and monitoring of the Strategic Plan of TSE, as well as coordinating the planning of the elections, encompassing 27 regional electoral courts. He also has expertise in Methodological and Practical Balanced Scorecard, Project Management Office implementation, Project Management and Institutional Portfolio Monitoring.
Leonardo is passionate about innovation and strategy in governance and cultivates interests in a number of related areas, including open justice, open government, open data, civic tech, information visualization, and data science. In so doing, he leads several Meetup groups aimed at exchanging information on the intersection of new technologies and the justice field, and on data science applications. Together, the Meetup groups have more than 700 participants.
Research Fellow María Hermosilla focuses her work on governance innovation in Latin America. At the GovLab, she does both research and project design and management. She conducts research on how technology is transforming government, which includes work on the impact of innovations such as big and open data, crowdsourcing, people analytics, and public labs on executive and legislative institutions. She is a collaborator on the Smarter State case studies series, which focuses on how public institutions use new technology to accelerate learning, and she does ongoing work on mapping the skills and expertise gap in government.
Complementing her research, María has convened and moderated a GovLab online conference on CrowdLaw that brought together practitioners working on participatory lawmaking from 16 countries. She is also collaborating on efforts to convene another global online conference series on using technology and innovation to combat mosquito borne illness.
Her projects include working with GovLab’s engineering team on the design and implementation of Network of Innovators, the bilingual skill-sharing network for government and civic innovators worldwide. In that capacity, she works with public sector partners to promote use of such platforms to accelerate learning, including organizing workshops and training in Mexico and the UK.
An experienced facilitator and trainer, María has designed and led the GovLab’s coaching program for the Organization of American States Open Government Fellows, working with government officials and nonprofit leaders across the Americas to help them take public interest projects from idea to implementation. She also helped lead the GovLab’s online lab design coaching program and collaborated in curriculum design and implementation of a GovLab-United States Department of Agriculture open data summer camp.
Prior to the Govlab, María worked in national government in Chile, leading the redesign of citizen information services and open data efforts at the Ministry of Public Works. She also designed public consultations and led the digitalization of services. Before going into the public sector, María worked in television as a producer, reporter and assistant director and served as a freelance correspondent for NPR.
A native Spanish speaker, María has a Master of Public Administration at New York University, where she studied public and nonprofit management with an emphasis on design thinking, data science and participatory policymaking.
Mark Adkins-Hastings is a software developer with diverse expertise in both technology and design. He joins GovLab's development and design team to build civic technologies that help institutions work more openly and collaboratively. Previously, Mark worked on citizen-centric technology projects for the United States federal government, including the Department of Justice and the Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). At USTPO, he developed the Office's electronic patent application filing system as part of a team promoting the adoption of more agile and modern design practices, including the use of citizen ethnography to ensure that government websites serve the public better.
Recently, Mark collaborated with a team from the USPTO and the White House, including members of the Presidential Innovation Fellows corps, to help develop a process and platform for crowdsourcing public expertise to enhance the patent examination process. His work was showcased to the US Undersecretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and the White House Office of the Chief Technology Officer.
Michelle is a Graduate Research Assistant at The GovLab, currently pursuing a Master's degree in Public Policy at NYU Wagner on a Fulbright scholarship. She holds a Bachelor's degree in International Relations from Universitas Pelita Harapan. Previously, she worked in the nonprofit sector in Indonesia where she developed and implemented a number of projects focusing on diversity, equality, inclusion, and conflict resolution.
Neil Kleiman has spent 20 years building a career at the intersection of policy, philanthropy, government and academia. He founded an urban issues think tank, established new university degree programs, and developed innovative and practical policy solutions for dozens of cities across the United States. He has also written and edited over thirty policy reports, with his work featured in many media outlets, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chronicle of Higher Education, PBS NewsHour and National Public Radio.
Kleiman is a clinical professor at New York University with a joint appointment at the Wagner School of Public Service and the Center for Urban Science + Progress. He teaches undergraduate and graduate-level courses on policy formation, urban innovation, and new approaches to managing technology and big data. He recently published a book with Stephen Goldsmith on urban governance reform entitled A New City O/S: The Power of Open, Collaborative and Distributed Governance on Brookings Institution press.
Kleiman serves as the MS Program Director at CUSP. And, as Director of the NYU Wagner Innovation Labs, he supports the development of initiatives and programs to address pressing urban challenges, both nationally and globally. His work has been generously supported at New York University by Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Citibank, Ford, Annie E. Casey, Robert Wood Johnson, MacArthur, Kauffman and Sloan Foundations.
He is also Director of Policy and Evaluation for the National Resource Network. Funded with $10 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Network is the nation’s first one-stop resource for cities seeking customized solutions to address pressing local challenges.
Before joining NYU, Kleiman was Director of Policy at Living Cities, a collaborative of the world’s largest foundations and corporate philanthropies, where he was responsible for developing and advancing the organization's policy agenda. In 2008, in partnership with the Kennedy School at Harvard University, he helped create the Project on Municipal Innovation, the only forum in the U.S. where mayoral advisors meet to learn about and design new policy ideas.
He began his career as the founding director of the Center for an Urban Future, a New York-based policy think tank whose work is consistently cited in local media outlets. The group has been the source of numerous ideas for mayoral and gubernatorial administrations that were then fully implemented in New York City and New York State.
Kleiman holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. In addition to teaching at NYU, he has also taught urban policy at Barnard College, John Jay College-CUNY, Tulane, Universidad de los Andes (Bogota) and has been a visiting fellow at Williams College.
Olivia Clark is a junior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill studying reporting journalism and environmental science. Olivia is working on corporate data projects at the GovLab, helping conduct research for the Blockchange, Blockchain and Extractives and Data Collaboratives projects.
Pablo Collada is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab. Pablo is a Mexican sociologist. For the past 16 years he has worked on Social Development issues mainly in civic engagement and technology, education and youth projects either in the public sector or the civil society arena. His previous work includes serving as Executive Director of Fundación Ciudadano Inteligente in Chile, an organization with projects in more than 10 countries in Latin America promoting democratic strengthening through advocacy, transparency, participation and the use of civic tech. He was also head of the Research Area for the Lab for the City initiative in Mexico City, where he was part of the development of the subnational Open Government Plan.
Richard Buery is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab where he advises on projects relating to cities and non-profits. He is a distinguished Visiting Professor at New York University's Tandon School of Engineering where he teaches Special Topics in Sustainable Urban Environments: Engineering Change in City Government.
Richard is also Chief of Policy & Public Affairs at the KIPP Foundation, leading their public policy, advocacy, marketing, and communications efforts to grow the KIPP network and advocate for policies that make it easier for students to afford college and overcome other barriers to success. KIPP, the Knowledge is Power Program, is a non-profit network of over 200 college-preparatory, public charter schools in 20 states and the District of Columbia educating nearly 100,000 early childhood, elementary, middle, and high school students, and supporting its graduates on the path to and through college.
Richard previously served as deputy mayor for strategic policy initiatives in the administration of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. In the mayor's office, he led key initiatives including Pre-K for All, which for the first time offers free, full-day Pre-K for every 4-year old in NYC, increasing enrollment from 19,000 to 70,000 children in 18 months; School's Out NYC, offering free afterschool programs to every middle schooler in NYC; and ThriveNYC, a comprehensive effort to improve New Yorkers’ mental health. He led a range of city agencies, including the Departments of Probation, Aging, Youth and Community Development, People with Disabilities, and Immigrant Affairs, and founded the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Office of Minority and Women Business Enterprises. He also managed the City's relationship with the 250,000 student City University of New York System.
While in college, Richard founded the Mission Hill Summer Program in a Roxbury, Massachusetts housing development, and went on to teach fifth grade at an orphanage in Bindura, Zimbabwe. After serving as a staff attorney at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, Richard co-founded iMentor, a national college access program which empowers low-income first-generation high school students to graduate college, and Groundwork, supporting the educational aspirations of Brooklyn public housing residents. While the CEO of the Children’s Aid Society, one of the nation's oldest and largest youth serving organizations, he founded the Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School in the South Bronx.
A 2016 Pahara-Aspen Institute Education Fellow, and a 2012 Fellow of the British American Project, he was named one of Ebony Magazine’s “30 Leaders of the Future under 30,” and Crain’s “40 Leaders of the Future under 40,” and received the Extraordinary Black Man Award for Humanitarianism from the United Negro College Fund. He has taught social entrepreneurship and nonprofit financial management at Baruch College and New York Law School. A graduate of Yale Law School and Harvard College, Richard lives in Brooklyn with his wife Deborah, a law professor, and his two sons.
Richard Culatta is a Senior Advisor at the GovLab. He is a recognized leader in government innovation. He has extensive experience working at the federal level, including leading initiatives to improve collaboration and knowledge sharing at the Central Intelligence Agency where he earned a Galileo recognition for innovation in Intelligence. Culatta also served as a policy advisor to US Senator Patty Murray. In 2012 Culatta was appointed by President Obama as the Director of the Office of Educational Technology where he focused on using technology and open data to tackle tough problems in education. Culatta received the Fierce 15 recognition for innovative government leaders.
Culatta also has experience working at the state level, serving as the first Chief Innovation Officer for the State of Rhode Island. As CINO Culatta launched the Government Innovation League, a program designed to develop public sector entrepreneurs within government. He also pioneered new ways to engage with citizens and policy makers to accelerate innovation in government. Richard serves as design resident for the San-Francisco based innovation and design firm IDEO.
Richard Wener, PhD, is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab. He is Professor of Environmental Psychology, and head of the Sustainable Urban Environments program at the Tandon School of Engineering of New York University. He is a fellow and past president of Division 34 of the American Psychological Association, and received the Career and Distinguished Service Awards from the Environmental Design Research Association and the Distinguished Scholar Research Award from the International Corrections and Prisons Association. Professor Wener’s research on the behavioral impacts of correctional settings began in 1975 and he has since conducted post occupancy evaluations and other studies in dozens of jails and prisons, culminating his 2012 book The Environmental Psychology of Prisons and Jails: Creating Humane Environments in Secure Settings from Cambridge University Press.
He is currently managing editor for a forthcoming volume from the International Committee of the Red Cross intended to serve as guidance for corrections planners worldwide on requirements for building and operating humane detention facilities. Professor Wener has also conducted research on commuting stress, has participated in a series post occupancy evaluations of green buildings, worked on the development and assessment of virtual learning systems for firefighters, and has studied the development of excellent urban spaces as part of the team for the Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence.
Professor Rod Glover is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab. Rod is Professor of Practice and head of Enterprise at Monash Sustainable Development Institute in Melbourne, Australia. In this capacity, he drives innovation and entrepreneurship in support of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Rod is also a member of the National Sustainable Development Council, which examines Australia’s progress in achieving the SDGs and provides insights to governments, business, academia and civil society on the nature of new challenges and new approaches to meeting them.
Rod has been Senior Adviser to an Australian Prime Minister, Senior Economic Adviser to Australia’s Shadow Treasurer, and Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Projects in Victoria’s Department of Premier and Cabinet. He has also worked for some of the world’s leading innovation agencies in London and San Francisco. He was chair of the education charity Hands on Learning Australia (focused on breaking the cycle of educational disadvantage) and is co-founder of an edutech startup that seeks to radically expand access to adult education.
Rod has been a Director of the Victorian Government’s Centre of Excellence in Intervention and Prevention Science (in public health) and a member of the Australian Government’s National Sustainability Council. He is now on the Board of Save the Children Australia, where he focuses on scaling internal businesses for global impact. Rod has driven the development of major policy frameworks in Australia, including the COAG National Reform Agenda (a $130 billion redesign of the framework of Commonwealth-State relations) and the Australian Government’s Industry and Innovation Statement. He has also designed and supported the establishment of new innovation agencies across a number of jurisdictions.
Sam DeJohn is a Research Assistant at The GovLab who recently graduated from Penn State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. His current research focuses on governance innovations in Latin American countries and Spain. He is part of the team evaluating the Organization of American States Fellowship Program and he is conducting a study of the Decide Madrid public engagement platform. Sam contributes to the GovLab blog and serves as a communications assistant to GovLab's Director of Communications. He is fluent in Spanish.
Timi Lewis is Director of Communications for the GovLab. Previously, she was vice president of marketing and communications for Housing Partnership Network, a nonprofit business collaborative. She also worked as an associate with Brunswick Group, a global strategic communications consultancy, and was director of corporate affairs and strategic planning for NYC Media, the official television, radio and digital network of New York City.
Ahead of these roles, Timi was a project manager for the corporate social responsibility practice at Ernst & Young, and an international trade consultant with Ernst & Young, Arthur Andersen, and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.
Throughout her career, Timi has also advised small businesses and nonprofits as an independent communications consultant. And she served two terms on the Board of Directors of New York Women in Communications.
Timi holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in public policy from Duke University, and a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Victoria Alsina is a Senior Fellow at the GovLab and Faculty Associate at the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business & Government at the Harvard Kennedy School.
Her current research focuses on finding innovative solutions to regenerate the public sector, helping communities and institutions to work together to solve problems more effectively and legitimately. Likewise, she explores how collaborative governance can change the way we govern solving some of society's most pressing problems at the intersection of the public and private sectors, developing innovative and practical policy solutions for cities.
Currently, she collaborates on GovLab Academy projects focused on promoting effective public engagement in lawmaking (CrowdLaw) and training civic leaders and civil servants in how to collaborate with their own communities (Civic Challenges). She has been also part of the Coaching Program Initiative, developing and scaling innovative projects, from idea to implementation.
At Harvard, she is Chair of the Study Group “The Challenge to Design a Technological Agora” and she leads the projects “Creating new conceptual and analytical frameworks to study public-private collaboration in Southern Europe and Latin America” and “Discovering who transforms Barcelona: Redefining public and private roles in urban transformation. Collaboration models and community impact.” As a member of the Transparency Policy Project at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, she contributes research for a new project on empowering patients through data and technology.
She is also Senior Researcher for the European Union Erasmus + Jean Monnet Project “Enhancing governance of EU policies: legal and institutional learnings from a US-EU dialogue.” Likewise, she advises numerous public and private institutions, including the OECD, the European Union and the Inter-American Development Bank, and trains civic leaders and civil servants on issues related to public sector reform, public-private collaboration, collaborative governance and democratic regeneration through technology.
She holds a BA in Political and Administration Sciences from Pompeu Fabra University, an MPA from the Autonomous University of Barcelona, an MA in Public Management from ESADE Business School, and a PhD in Political and Social Sciences from Pompeu Fabra University.
She tweets @_VictoriaAlsina.
Vishala Pariag is a rising junior in the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering department at NYU Tandon School of Engineering. Vishala is working on the “Public Entrepreneurship” project at the GovLab.