Data and Democracy Visiting Scholars


Tanja Aitamurto, Center for Journalism, Media and Communication Research at Tampere University

Tanja Aitamurto examines collective intelligence, whether harnessed by crowdsourcing, co-creation or open innovation practices, alters processes in journalism, public policy making and new product development. Her work has been published in several academic publications, such as the New Media and Society. Related to her studies, she advises the Government and the Parliament of Finland about Open Government principles, for example about how open data and crowdsourcing can serve democratic processes.

Dan Gilette, Carnegie Mellon University

Dan Gillette is a project scientist at CMU, where he conducts design research and development in the areas of voting, disability and considerate systems. Dan also teaches and consults in this area.

Dan’s previous experience includes R&D projects for WestEd’s Schools Moving Up program, the Pearson Charitable Foundation, and the National Academy Foundation; research and teaching positions at Stanford University (product design, engineering, assistive technology), UC Berkeley (disability studies and product design), Mills College (computer science), and CSU Monterey Bay (assistive technology and curriculum development); and cofounding InWorld Solutions, a startup that provides virtual reality tools for the behavioral healthcare market. From 2002-2008, Dan was chair of the Innovative Technology for Autism Initiative, a grassroots consortium focused on developing better tools for individuals with autism and their assistants, teachers and relatives. Dan has accumulated over ten years of experience as a learning specialist, working at schools and universities with students of all ages. He has also been a college administrator, curriculum developer and museum exhibit designer.

Ted Selker, Carnegie Mellon University

He is well known for guiding, demonstrating and speaking about strategic emerging technology opportunities. He specializes in seeding strategic conversations and in creating targeted workshops to teach and guide invention and innovation. Ted spent ten years as an associate Professor at the MIT Media Laboratory where he created the Context Aware Computing group, co-directed the Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project, and directed a CI/IDI: kitchen of the future/ product design of the future project. His work is noted for creating demonstrations of a world in which intentions are recognized and respected in complex domains, such as kitchens, cars, on phones and in email. Ted’s work takes the form of prototyping concept products supported by cognitive science research.