- Full-Stack Engineer and Designer at Cogitai
- Researcher in History and Philosophy of Science (HPS)
- Focused on social, ethical, and civic implications of AI
- Active w.r.t. promoting inclusivity, esp. women + minorities in STEM, LGBTQ, and AAPI
My name is Wells Lucas Santo, and I am currently a full-stack engineer and designer working at Cogitai. I am also an interdisciplinary researcher in history and philosophy of science (HPS), focusing primarily on the social and ethical implications of artificial intelligence (AI).
I graduated from New York University with a MS in Computer Science, a BS in Computer Engineering, and a minor in Science and Society. I hope to soon return to academia to pursue my doctorate in either HPS or Science, Technology, and Society (STS).
Specifically, I care about how intelligent technologies can impact government and existing social structures, and believe that expertise in the humanities must be central to how we understand, use, and deploy our technologies in order to promote social good and avoid unintended negative consequences.
I am also insistent and vocal about the need for inclusivity and diversity in the workplace and the classroom. In particular, I care about promoting and fostering LGBTQ in STEM, women and minorities in STEM, and AAPI in the arts and humanities.
Hey there! My name is Wells Lucas Santo, and I am currently a full-stack engineer and designer working at Cogitai, an absolutely amazing artificial intelligence (AI) company led by some of the foremost researchers in the subfield of AI known as reinforcement learning. In addition to this position, I am also an interdisciplinary researcher in history and philosophy of science (HPS), focusing primarily on the social and ethical implications of artificial intelligence. My interests align closely with those of the FATE Group at Microsoft Research and Data & Society, though I am not affiliated with either of the two.
I graduated from New York University's Tandon School of Engineering, with a MS in Computer Science (with a specialization in artificial intelligence), a BS in Computer Engineering (with a specialization in digital signal processing), and a minor in Science and Society (with a specialization in history and philosophy of science). I had the great pleasure of working under the advisement of Julian Togelius, Jonathan Viventi, and Jonathan Bain in each of these programs, respectively. I hope to soon return to academia to pursue my doctorate in either HPS or Science, Technology, and Society (STS).
Specificially, I care about how computer science, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data science (intelligent technologies) can impact government and affect existing social structures. Particular issues in this space that I am concerned about are predictive policing, transparency of algorithms and data-driven decision making, amplification of social biases by (machine learning) algorithms, accessibility and accountability of artificial intelligence tools, and safety and regulation of intelligent technologies. I also care about how we can use intelligent technologies to improve government, boost social equality, and better democratize resources, while being careful to understand the limitations of our technologies and mitigate any unintended consequences of the algorithms that we use. I am adamant in the belief that though computer science may be a powerful tool, it alone is not a panacea for the perennial issues in economics, politics, and society, and that expertise in other disciplines such as history, ethnography, sociology, political science, design, and philosophy must be central to how we understand, analyze, use, and deploy our technologies in order to promote social good and avoid unintended negative consequences.
I am also insistent and vocal about the need for inclusivity and diversity in the workplace and the classroom. As a queer, pansexual, Asian-American individual, the history, rights, and representation of LGBTQ and Asian-American Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities are close to heart. I am deeply committed to promoting and fostering LGBTQ visibility and leadership in tech, and am a member of both oSTEM and NOGLSTP. I am also vigilant about the inclusivity of women in STEM and outspoken about the need for systemic and cultural changes to facilitate inclusivity that goes beyond statistics and the "pipeline". I believe that a crucial piece in changing the landscape of STEM is by making STEM education more accessible, inclusive, and diverse. Last but definitely not least, I am invested in understanding the AAPI experience and promoting AAPI interest in the arts and humanities.