The Public Technology Leadership Collaborative (PTLC) is a new peer learning collective of scholars, researchers, and government leaders committed to addressing the social and cultural implications of data and technology.
We know that technology alone cannot solve social problems, and indeed, can cause harm, exacerbate long-standing inequities, and encode injustice. The extent to which decision-makers across all levels of government appreciate this, and recognize how society and technology shape one another, will impact how the US addresses key issues like data governance, the distribution of public benefits, predictive control of workplaces, platform accountability, and the role of algorithmic systems in everyday life. At stake is whether the government’s understanding, procurement, use, and regulation of data and technology is shaped in the public interest — grounded in values of justice, equity, and accountability — or by other powerful, private interests. At stake is whether the government merely defends the public interest — minimizing harms while sustaining problematic systems — or moves actively to advance it.
The PTLC brings together academic researchers and government leaders who are interested in the ways society and technology interact. Together, we’ll start to build the trust-based relationships that bridge the worlds of academia and government and enable ongoing, adaptive support. That networked infrastructure is key to thoughtful policymaking and will persist beyond the term of any state or local official, or any administration.
Alex Bolton: Program Manager at Tech Policy Lab, University of Washington School of Law
Elizabeth Eagen: Deputy Director of the Citizens and Technology Lab, Cornell University
Margaret Hu: Professor of Law, William & Mary Law School; Advisory Board, Center for Critical Race & Digital Studies
Colin Maclay: Professor & Executive Director, USC Annenberg Innovation Lab
Kathryn Peters: Executive Director, UNC’s Center for Information, Technology, & Public Life
Jessica Hill Riggs: DISCO Program Manager at Digital Studies Institute, University of Michigan
Mona Sloane: Research Assistant Professor, NYU Tandon School of Engineering; Senior Research Scientist, NYU Center for Responsible AI
Emily Tavoulareas: Faculty Affiliate, Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation at Georgetown University; Managing Chair, Georgetown Tech & Society.
Participating research centers
- Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation at Georgetown University
- Center for Critical Race & Digital Studies
- Cornell University’s Citizens and Technology Lab
- DISCO Network
- NYU’s Center for Responsible AI
- University of Michigan’s Digital Studies Institute
- University of North Carolina Center for Information, Technology, and Public Life
- University of Southern California Annenberg Innovation Lab
- University of Washington Center for an Informed Public
- University of Washington Tech Policy Lab