About / CV
My research analyzes the way that various groups determine what counts as research and technology of security concern, and how that process of shaping things of security concern also shapes the governance system around them. It draws on and contributes to the literature on classification, boundary work, international political/technological institutions, and the co-production of social and technological systems. Topically, I am currently focused on the governance of security concerns within synthetic biology, and have an ongoing interest in the governance systems for conventional and cyber “dual-use” technology.
I am currently a Lecturer at Harvard University’s Department for the History of Science, and a Research Affiliate at the Center for International Studies at MIT. I have just completed three years as Associate Director for Research for CSTMS, where I helped build the Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society (CSTMS). From 2009-2011, I was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard, which was a joint appointment with the Program on Science, Technology, & Society, located within the Kennedy School of Government and the School of Engineering & Applied Science. I completed my doctoral research in 2009 within the Institute for Science, Innovation, & Society (formerly the James Martin Institute for Science & Civilization) at the University of Oxford. This research, supervised by Professor Steve Rayner, was on the Wassenaar Arrangement, an international informal group that works to prevent destabilising accumulations of conventional arms and dual-use technologies in regions of concern.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions!
- Security controls on international trade, especially the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies
- The construction and governance of security concerns within Synthetic Biology
- Science & Technology Studies, especially:
- The coproduction of social and knowledge systems
- Ambiguity, uncomfortable knowledge, and the social construction of ignorance
- Classification systems, particularly how we catergorize items as malicious or not (e.g. “dual-use” research and technology)
- International security
- Cultural Theory (building on the work of Mary Douglas)
View my Zotero reference library to see a complete list of articles I work with.
- (with Emma Frow) “’Taking Care’ of Security in Synthetic Biology,” (forthcoming) in Rappert, Brian and Balmer, Brian (eds) The Shadows of Science: How its Social and Security Implications Disappear. Palgrave.
- “Book Review: Vulnerability in Technological Cultures: New Directions in Research and Governance. Edited by Anique Hommels, Jessica Mesman and Wiebe E. Bijker.” Science and Public Policy. 17 February 2015.
- “What’s the Matter with Biosecurity?” Journal of Responsible Innovation. Author’s Original Manuscript. 17 January 2015.
- (with Sheila Jasanoff, Jane Calvert, Jason Delborne, Robert Doubleday, Emma Frow, Silvio Funtowicz, Brian Green, Dave H. Guston, Ben Hurlbut, Alan Irwin, Pierre-Benoit Joly, Jennifer Kuzma, Megan Palmer, Margaret Race, Jack Stilgoe, Andy Stirling, James Wilsdon, David Winickoff, Brian Wynne, and Laurie Zoloth) “Synthetic Biology: Missing the Point.” in Nature. 12 June 2014.
- Revising Export Control List. A report of the Flemish Peace Institute. March 2014.
- “Dual Use Research of Concern – Comments on the US Government’s Proposed Policy.”
- (with Walter Valdiva) “Export controls and the tension between academic freedom and national security,” in Minerva. May 2012.
- “Technological Ambiguity & the Wassenaar Arrangement” DPhil thesis, University of Oxford, submitted Trinity Term 2009.
- The Governance of Technology at the World Trade Organization: a cultural theory framework. Dissertation for the degree of Masters of Science in Management Research, University of Oxford.
- Bryant, R. G., S. A. Evans, E. R. Long Jr., R. L. Fox (2000) “Thermal and Mechanical Characterization of NASA High Displacement Actuators For Satellite Instrumentation.” Smart Structures and Materials 2000: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, Proceedings of SPIE Vol. 3991. 195-200.
- “Is this a threat? The (un)making of security concerns in emerging technology,” paper given to the Harvard History of Science seminar series, 21 October 2014.
- “Taking care of security in synthetic biology research”, paper given at the side event of the Biological Weapons Convention Meeting of Experts, 6 August 2014. Geneva. Slides.
- “Broader Aspects of Bioengineering,” presentation to the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 18 June 2014. “Making Security a Matter of Non-Concern in Synthetic Biology,” presentation at the Year 8 Synberc Spring Retreat, University of California, Berkeley, 26 March 2014.
- “The Value of Collaborative Framings in Gaining Access to, and Analyzing, Security Concerns in Research and Development” paper presented at the Society for the Social Studies of Science annual conference, San Diego, California, 12 October 2013.
- “Getting Security Off the Mind: When is It Ok to Not Think About the Security Aspects of Synthetic Biology” paper presented at the Issues and Non-issues in Science and Medicine Symposium, University of Exeter, 28 September 2013.
- “Whoops! How Did That Get Through? Knowledge and Ignorance at the Intersection of Academia and National Security” paper presented at the Society for the Social Studies of Science annual conference, Copenhagen, 16 October 2012.
- (with Walter Valdivia) “Export Controls and the Tensions Between Academic Freedom and National Security, “ poster presented at the Gordon Science and Technology Policy Conference, Waterville Valley Resort Waterville Valley, NH, August 5-10, 2012.
- “Technology Control and Imagined International Orders,” paper presented to the Society for Philosophy and Technology conference, Denton Texas, 27 May 2011. Also presented to the UC Berkeley Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society Brownbag seminar.
- “States, borders, and security: exports controls in physical space and cyberspace,” invited paper presented to Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Cooperation and the Program in Science,Technology, and Society, 10 January 2011. Also given at the Naval Postgrad School, 11 January 2011. Slides.
- “Imaginaries of State Security”, paper given at the Science Democracy Network annual meeting, in conjunction with the British Royal Society’s 350th celebrations, Kavli House, UK, 28-30 2010.
- “The Bounds of Applicability of Export Controls”, paper given at The Rightful Place of Science? conference at CSPO, Arizona State University, 16-19 May 2010.
- “Finding Common Ambiguity: what is left out of dual-use technology definitions”, paper given at the Uncertainty: Ambiguity and Doubt in Knowledge Production conference at Stanford University, 23-24 April 2010.
- “Technological Ambiguity in Export Controls: A tool for legitimacy?”, invited presentation to the Cornell University Peace Studies Program, jointly sponsored by the Cornell Department of Science & Technology Studies, 11 March 2010. (PDF of slides; Streaming quicktime movie of the slides)
- “How do we prevent the malicious use of technology? Can we?” Presentation the the New College Graduate Colloquium, University of Oxford, 22 October 2008.
- “Is it possible to define technologies to be controlled?” Talk given to the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, Monterey Institute of International Studies, California on 26 August 2008.
- “Governing trade in dual-use items: the problem of deﬁnition” Paper prepared for The 2008 Oxford/Sciences-Po Doctoral Seminar on Regional and Global Institutions in the 21st Century, 1 May 2008.
- “‘You want to control technology? Fine, give me a list.’ ‘It’s not that easy, sir.’”, Talk given to the James Martin 21st Century School Advanced Research Seminar Series, University of Oxford, 16 November 2007.
- “International Relations, Cultural Theory, and STS: Can these children learn to play together?”, Presentation given to the James Martin Institute Work in Progress Seminar, University of Oxford, 15 May 2007.
- “The Wassenaar Arrangement: The unsexiest of international regimes”, Invited talk given to CPASS Speaker Series, Georgetown University, 11 April 2007.
- “Governing the Unknown Knowns: A reply to Jerry Ravetz”, Presentation given to the James Martin Institute Work in Progress Seminar, University of Oxford, 31 October 2006.
- “Defining Dual-Use: An international assessment of the discourses around technology”, Talk given to the ESRC New Directions in Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation Workshop, King’s College London, 27 February 2006.
- “Pluralistic Tools for Policy Analysis”, Talk given to the Mid-Summer YSSP Workshop, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Austria, 20 July 2005.
- Lecturer, Department for the History of Science, Harvard University (Spring 2015-present)
- Visiting Fellow, Department for the History of Science, Harvard University (Fall 2014)
- Research Affiliate, Center for International Studies, MIT (2014-present)
- Research Fellow, Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society, University of California, Berkeley (Fall 2014)
- Lecturer, Department of History, University of California, Berkeley (2013)
- Associate Director for Research, Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society, University of California, Berkeley (2011-2014)
- Research Associate, Program on Science, Technology, & Society, Harvard University (2011-2012)
- Postdoctoral Fellow, Program on Science, Technology, & Society (John F. Kennedy School of Government), and the School of Engineering & Applied Science, Harvard University (2009-2011)
- Professional Development Coordinator, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford (2007-2008)
- Visiting Researcher, Security Studies Program, Center for Peace and Security Studies, Georgetown University (2006-2007)
- Research Assistant to Sir Crispin Tickell, Policy Foresight Programme, University of Oxford (2004-2008)
- Young Scientist Summer Program, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Vienna (2005)
- Tutor in International Security, Stanford House, University of Oxford (2005-2006)
- Teaching Assistant, Oxford MBA Programme course on “Technology and Innovation Strategy” (2004-2005)
- Copy Editor, Dr. Alan Ryan (2004-2005)
- Summer Scholar, NASA Langley Research Center (1999-2001)
Grants & Awards
- Principle Investigator (PI) “Building options for redesigning synthetic biology’s security regulatory environment.” NSF sub-award from the Synthetic Biology Engineering Research Center (Synberc) (2013-2014).
- Co-PI (with Profs. Brian Rappert, Brian Balmer) “The Formulation and Non-formulation of Security Concerns: Preventing the Destructive Application of the Life Sciences.” UK Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) Science and Security Programme. Grant no. ES/K011308/1. (2013-2014)
- (with Professor David Winickoff) “Science Governance and Risk Futures in Synthetic Biology and Geoengineering.” Seed grant from the University of California Institute for Global Conflict and Cooperation. (2012-2013)
- PI “Revising Multilateral Export Control Lists.” Contract with the Flemish Peace Institute. (2012-2013)
- Next Generation Science and Technology Policy Leader (2010) Awarded by the Consortium for Science, Policy & Outcomes, Arizona State University.
- Dan Gowler Award (2004) Awarded for the best dissertation in the Management Faculty, University of Oxford.
- “Science & Society” History undergraduate course, University of California, Berkeley. Instructor of Record (2013)
- “Introduction to Technology & Society” Undergraduate core course, Harvard University. Head Teaching Fellow (2010-2012)
- “Science & Security” Tutorials for Stanford House (visiting students), University of Oxford. (2005-2006)
- “Technology and Innovation Strategy” MBA Programme, University of Oxford. Teaching Assistant. (2004-2005)
- DPhil (2009) New College, University of Oxford. Thesis title: Technological Ambiguity & the Wassenaar Arrangement. Supervisor: Steve Rayner
- MSc in Management Research (2004) New College, University of Oxford. Dissertation title: The governance of biotechnology at the World Trade Organization: a cultural theory framework. Supervisor: Steve Rayner
- Visiting Student (2002-2003) University of Oxford
- BA in Philosophy and Physics (2002) St. Olaf College, MN, USA
- Practices Judge for the International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) competition (2013)
- Professional Development Coordinator, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford (2007-2008)
- Member of the Steering Committee for the Oxford Intelligence Group (2004-2009)
- President, Oxford University Strategic Studies Group (2003-2005)