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Core faculty

Shobita Parthasarathy

Professor of Public Policy; Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy program
Parthasarathy studies the governance of emerging science and technology and the politics of evidence and expertise in policy in comparative and international perspective. Her current research focuses on equity in innovation and innovation policy. She co-hosts The Received Wisdom podcast.
Publication

A tale of two perspectives on innovation and global equity

Feb 13, 2024
Inclusive innovation—the idea of introducing technologies designed for and by the poor to boost economic growth in impoverished communities—often misses the real problems facing these communities and champions solutions that benefit entrepreneurs at...
State & Hill

The Last Word: Molly Kleinman

Dec 12, 2023
Molly Kleinman (MSI ’07, PhD CSHPE ’18) joined the Ford School’s Science, Technology, and Public Policy (STPP) program in 2018 and became managing director in 2021. She received her STPP certificate in 2014 and served as Paul Courant’s special...
News

Parthasarathy named to prestigious French council

Dec 8, 2023
Ford School professor Shobita Parthasarathy has been named to the scientific council for ANSES, the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety. ANSES is a public administrative body reporting to the Ministries of Health,...
News

Parthasarathy comments on one year of ChatGPT

Dec 6, 2023
One  year ago, OpenAI launched ChatGPT, a chatbot built on the large language model GPT-3. Since then, knowledge workers in all sectors have been grappling with the potential uses of it and similar artificial intelligence models—as well as the...
In the Media

Kleinman on the hazards of facial recognition technology in schools

Oct 4, 2023 City & State
“One thing that’s different from a lot of these earlier kinds of surveillance technologies is the way that the data travels so far beyond the school where it’s coming from,” Kleinman said in an interview.  “The student data in these databases is...
In the Media

Kleinman on safe Ann Arbor streets

Sep 8, 2023 WEMU
Molly Kleinman, WEMU: Molly Kleinman is a member of the Ann Arbor Transportation Commission. "As it turns out, people want to live on streets that are safe and where they are not experiencing cars flying down them all day." Kleinman says by...
In the Media

"Appropriative" patents a long-term problem - Parthasarathy

Sep 1, 2023 NPR Planet Money
The way that a lot of pharmaceutical companies got their knowledge was often from going to other countries and finding out about Indigenous knowledge and then coming back and testing that. So there's a famous case of Eli Lilly patenting a treatment...
News

STPP to explore best practice in community engagement

Aug 1, 2023
As technologists and scientists increasingly engage with communities in order to enhance the societal benefits of their work, and demonstrate its public value, it is important to ensure that such engagements benefit the people they claim to serve....
Publication

Parthasarathy calls for reimagining the innovation process

Jul 19, 2023
The basic model of technological innovation in the U.S. has relied upon academic research and private sector commercialization. While the standard approach has stimulated macroeconomic growth, produced many valuable products, and created jobs,...
News

Ford School welcomes PPIA 2023 cohort

Jun 19, 2023
The 2023 Public Policy and International Affairs (PPIA) Junior Summer Institute (JSI) has welcomed 23 students from 11 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. This year’s cohort will spend seven weeks taking classes, participating in...
In the Media

Parthasarathy: ChatGPT reinforces human biases

Jun 18, 2023 WDET
Shobita Parthasarathy says ChatGPT simply reiterates language that humans have already created, and that often the ideas and biases that humans exhibit are reinforced by the tool. “[ChatGPT] is not magic. It’s also not an asteroid. It is us. It...
News

Pretrial risk assessment tools found to be subjective and biased

May 4, 2023 Read the full brief
In their attempts to reform the cash bail system, jurisdictions across the country are turning to automated pretrial risk assessment tools that ‘predict’ if a defendant will be arrested for a new crime while waiting for trial or will fail to appear...
News

STPP receives grant to study STEM-in-Society training

Apr 21, 2023
As science becomes more central to our daily lives—whether for predicting the impacts of climate change, transforming our physical and cognitive capabilities, or developing life-saving pharmaceuticals—socially responsible research and innovation are...
News

STPP gift to expand educational opportunities for undergraduates

Mar 22, 2023
The Science, Technology, and Public Policy (STPP) program has received a $250,000 gift to expand educational opportunities for undergraduates across campus. The gift comes from Phil (LSA ’87) and Julie (LSA ’88) Hollyer, parents of Keegan (Ford BA...
In the Media

AI will 'turbocharge' inequalities in health care - Parthasarathy

Mar 16, 2023 Bridge Michigan
Shobita Parthasarathy, Bridge Michigan: "Health care systems don't even know what data they're missing. That (AI) gets integrated into medical care as a mechanism for achieving efficiency. But they do that without realizing that it's going to...
In the Media

Parthasarathy on AI technology perils

Feb 28, 2023 Business Insider
Business Insider: Run-ins with users show some of the potentially troubling outcomes to expect when companies experiment with the public on new AI technologies, said Shobita Parthasarathy, a public policy professor at the University of Michigan, who...
Publication

Automated License Plate Readers widely used, subject to abuse

Feb 22, 2023
Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) are being used by a growing number of public and private entities to track drivers’ movements and location. The use of the technology is almost entirely unregulated and can be subject to abuse, so some...
In the Media

Parthasarathy weighs in on implications of ChatGPT

Feb 6, 2023 Nature
Shobita Parthasarathy, Nature: "Besides directly producing toxic content, there are concerns that AI chatbots will embed historical biases or ideas about the world from their training data, such as the superiority of particular cultures, says...