Sherry Turkle,


MIT Initiative on Technology and Self, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Sherry Turkle is the Abby Rockefeller Mauze Professor of the Social Studies of Science and Technology in the Program in Science, Technology, and Society, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), as well as the founder and current director of the MIT Initiative on Technology and Self, a center of research and reflection on the evolving connections between people and artifacts.  Referred to by many as the “Margaret Mead of digital culture,” Professor Turkle has investigated the intersection of digital technology and human relationships from the early days of personal computers to our current world of robotics, artificial intelligence, social networking, and mobile connectivity.  Her exploration into our lives on the digital terrain shows how technological advancement doesn’t just catalyze changes in what we do—it affects how we think.  Her research also raises critical questions about technology’s role in business productivity, asking whether multi-tasking actually leads to deteriorating performance in each of our tasks.  Does our always-connected state affect our ability to think, to be creative, and to innovate?  Professor Turkle has been profiled in such publications as the New York TimesScientific American, and WIRED.  She is a featured media commentator on the effects of technology for CNN, NBC, ABC, and NPR, including appearances on such programs as Nightline, 20/20, and The Colbert Report, and has been named a Harvard Centennial Medalist and a Ms. Magazine Woman of the Year. In 2014, she was named to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Her New York Times best-seller, Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age, focuses on the importance of conversation in digital cultures. Her previous book, Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other, was a featured talk at TED2012, describing technology’s influence on relationships between friends, lovers, parents and children, and new instabilities in how we understand privacy and community, intimacy, and solitude.  She earned a joint doctorate in sociology and personality psychology, Harvard University, and is a licensed clinical psychologist.