Harvard Radcliffe Institute Announces 2022–2023 Fellows
From robotic fish to a novel-in-progress inspired by Amelia Earhart, Radcliffe’s new fellows will come from 14 countries to pursue an incredible range of important projects
Contact: Mac Daniel
Associate Director of Communications, Harvard Radcliffe Institute
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (May 17, 2022) — Harvard Radcliffe Institute today announced its 2022–2023 fellows, a cohort that brings ambitious projects and exciting possibilities to Radcliffe and the wider Harvard community—from fiction and art to bold innovations like a robotic fish that gives biologists an unfiltered view of aquatic behavior and algorithms to provide real-time interventions for substance abuse, mental illness, or heart disease.
The Harvard Radcliffe Institute Fellowship Program, now in its 22nd year, offers scholars and practitioners in the humanities, sciences, social sciences, and arts—as well as writers, journalists, and others—a rare opportunity to pursue their work in a vibrant interdisciplinary community.
This year, Radcliffe selected 50 fellows and four graduate student fellows for the 2022–2023 class from a wide pool of applicants. This year’s class is drawn from 14 countries, including the first Radcliffe fellows from Paraguay and Peru—the filmmaker Paz Encina and the linguist Roberto Zariquiey, respectively.
“So many of us are inspired in this moment to pursue new scholarly approaches and innovative solutions to the pressing challenges we face, and this year’s fellowship class includes an incredible range of important projects,” said Tomiko Brown-Nagin, dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Daniel P. S. Paul Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, professor of history in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, and chair of Harvard’s Presidential Committee on Harvard & the Legacy of Slavery. “I am looking forward to all they accomplish. I know from firsthand experience how meaningful and generative a Radcliffe fellowship can be, and I am thrilled to welcome this talented new cohort to campus.”
The unique interdisciplinary community at Radcliffe will provide this fellowship class with the time and space to pursue exciting new work at the frontiers of knowledge and practice. With access to Harvard’s unparalleled resources, Radcliffe fellows develop new tools and methods, challenge artistic and scholarly conventions, and illuminate the past, present, and future. Throughout the academic year, fellows convene regularly to share their work in progress with the community, and some fellows also opt to share their work in progress with the public.
A few glimpses of what’s among the many exciting projects of the 2022–2023 fellowship class:
- Alexandra Bell, a 2022–2023 Evelyn Green Davis Fellow, is a multidisciplinary artist who explores the complexities of narrative, information consumption, and perception. During her time at Radcliffe, she will develop a speculative newspaper that will use public art and multimedia to engage her “readers” with issues that disproportionately affect Black and other marginalized communities.
- Rahul Bhatia, this year’s Lisa Goldberg Fellow at Radcliffe, is a writer and contributor to the Guardian and the New Yorker. Bhatia cofounded a multimedia journalism platform to explore vital issues in India. He will use his fellowship year to write a book that illuminates how Hindu nationalists used powerful identification tools that were intended to help India’s poor to instead reframe Indian democracy and citizenship in ethno-nationalist terms.
- Jennifer Finney Boylan, the Marilyn Beaudry-Corbett Schlesinger Fellow, is the author of 16 books, a trustee of PEN America, guest columnist for the New York Times, and a transgender rights activist. During her fellowship, Boylan will draw on the archives of Radcliffe’s Schlesinger Library to write a novel inspired by the pioneering aviator Amelia Earhart.
- Tawanna Dillahunt, a professor at the University of Michigan, works at the intersection of human-computer interaction; environmental, economic, and social sustainability; and equity. As a 2022–2023 William Bentinck-Smith Fellow at Radcliffe, she will analyze data in which Black and brown Detroiters shared visions for alternative economies, new ways of thinking about technology, and ideas for amplifying marginalized voices.
- Lisa I. Iezzoni, the 2022–2023 Sally Starling Seaver Fellow and a faculty member at Harvard Medical School, will use findings from interviews conducted with clinicians and patients to understand how to support people with disabilities or complex health needs more effectively while they remain at home.
- Yahya Modarres-Sadeghi, a professor of mechanical and industrial engineering at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, will collaborate with the Harvard biologist George Lauder and his students to design and build a robotic fish that will enable the study of fish behavior in unexplored ocean environments.
- Susan A. Murphy, a Radcliffe Alumnae Professor and the Mallinckrodt Professor of Statistics and of Computer Science at Harvard, will spend her fellowship furthering her pathbreaking work to improve real-time sequential decision making in mobile health. Murphy works with algorithms that pool data from individuals and can be deployed on wearable devices to help deliver interventions or guidance for those struggling with chronic disorders such as substance abuse or mental illness.
“In practical terms, these coveted fellowships offer individuals the chance to place some of their daily responsibilities aside and focus on important projects,” said Claudia Rizzini, executive director of the Fellowship Program. “The magic of the program, however, is the community. By gathering with individuals from such a wide range of backgrounds and expertise, the Institute becomes an incubator—a place where our fellows can nurture and coax new ideas out of the old, to map previously uncharted paths in the company of other explorers. That is the beauty of a Radcliffe fellowship.”
About Harvard Radcliffe Institute
The Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University—or Harvard Radcliffe Institute—is one of the world’s leading centers for interdisciplinary exploration. We bring students, scholars, artists, and practitioners together to pursue curiosity-driven research, expand human understanding, and grapple with questions that demand insight from across disciplines.