AI and the 2024 Elections

Please join the GETTING-Plurality Research Network at the Ash Center’s Allen Lab and Connection Science at MIT Media Lab for a workshop series event focused on “AI and the 2024 Elections”.

Online Event

Virtual, Registration Required
9:00 am – 10:00 am EDT

Please join the GETTING-Plurality Research Network at the Ash Center’s Allen Lab and Connection Science at MIT Media Lab for a workshop series event focused on “AI and the 2024 Elections”. In this session, we’ll hear from Professor Danielle Allen, Harvard; Professor Sandy Pentland, MIT; and Professor Nate Persily, Stanford; who each bring a unique perspective to AI and elections through the lens of philosophy, technology, law, and politics. Each presenter will give a lightning talk, followed by an audience Q&A.

About the Speakers

Danielle Allen is James Bryant Conant University Professor at Harvard University and Director of the Allen Lab for Democracy Renovation at Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation. She is a professor of political philosophy, ethics, and public policy. She is also a seasoned nonprofit leader, democracy advocate, tech ethicist, distinguished author, and mom.

Danielle’s work to make the world better for young people has taken her from teaching college and leading a $60 million university division to driving change at the helm of a $6 billion foundation, writing as a national opinion columnist, advocating for cannabis legalization, public health policy, democracy renovation, civic education, and sound governance of and with new technology. During the height of COVID in 2020, Danielle’s leadership in rallying coalitions and building solutions resulted in the country’s first-ever Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience; her policies were adopted in federal legislation and a presidential executive order. She was the 2020 winner of the Library of Congress’ Kluge Prize, which recognizes scholarly achievement in the disciplines not covered by the Nobel Prize. She received the Prize “for her internationally recognized scholarship in political theory and her commitment to improving democratic practice and civics education.” She was a lead author on the Roadmap to Educating for American Democracy, a framework for securing excellence in history and civic education for all learners, K-12, released in 2021. During 2020 to 2022, Danielle ran for governor of Massachusetts, making history as the first Black woman ever to run for statewide office in Massachusetts.

Alex ‘Sandy’ Pentland directs MIT Connection Science, an MIT-wide initiative, and previously helped create and direct the MIT Media Lab and the Media Lab Asia in India. He is one of the most-cited computational scientists in the world, and Forbes declared him one of the “7 most powerful data scientists in the world” along with Google founders and the Chief Technical Officer of the United States. He is on the Board of the UN Foundations’ Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data, co-led the World Economic Forum discussion in Davos that led to the EU privacy regulation GDPR, and was one of the UN Secretary General’s “Data Revolutionaries” helping to forge the transparency and accountability mechanisms in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. He has received numerous awards and prizes such as the McKinsey Award from Harvard Business Review, the 40th Anniversary of the Internet from DARPA, and the Brandeis Award for work in privacy. Recent invited keynotes include annual meetings of OECD, G20, World Bank, and JP Morgan.

He is a member of advisory boards for the UN Secretary General, the UN Foundation, Consumers Union, and OECD, and formerly the American Bar Association, Google, AT&T, and Nissan. He is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering and council member within the World Economic Forum.

Nate Persily is the James B. McClatchy Professor of Law at Stanford Law School, with appointments in the departments of Political Science, Communication, and the Freeman Spogli Institute of International Studies. He is the Founding Co-Director of the Stanford Cyber Policy Center and its Program on Democracy and the Internet, as well as the Stanford-MIT Healthy Elections Project. Professor Persily’s scholarship and legal practice address issues such as voting rights, political parties, campaign finance, redistricting, and election administration – all topics covered in his coauthored election law casebook, The Law of Democracy (Foundation Press, 6th ed., 2020), with Samuel Issacharoff, Pamela Karlan, Richard Pildes and Franita Tolson. He has served as a special master or court-appointed expert to craft congressional or legislative districting plans for Georgia, Maryland, Connecticut, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania. He also served as the Senior Research Director for the Presidential Commission on Election Administration. His current work, for which he has been honored as a Guggenheim Fellow, Andrew Carnegie Fellow, and a Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, examines the impact of social media and artificial intelligence on political communication, campaigns, and elections. His most recent book is a coedited volume with Joshua Tucker, Social Media and Democracy: The State of the Field and Prospects for Reform (Cambridge Press, 2020). Professor Persily is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and served as a commissioner on the Kofi Annan Commission on Elections and Democracy in the Digital Age. He received a B.A. and M.A. in political science from Yale (1992); a J.D. from Stanford (1998) where he was President of the Stanford Law Review, and a Ph.D. in political science from U.C. Berkeley in 2002.

About the Series

The aim of this workshop series is to assist policymakers and students in obtaining the most up-to-date knowledge about the impacts of artificial intelligence on society and democracy, in order to improve their ability to shape global public policy. The workshops will be delivered by experts from across academia, as well as public and private sectors.

Event Details

This event is online only, and registration is required. A recording will be made available after the event’s conclusion.

The Ash Center encourages individuals with disabilities to participate in its events. Should you wish to enquire about an accommodation, please contact our events team at prior to the event.