Sara M. Watson

Technology Critic

Sara M. Watson
  • Fellow and Affiliate of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University
  • Published writer in The Atlantic, Wired, and The Washington Post
  • Researched award-winning Oxford thesis on the personal data practices of the Quantified Self community

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Sara M. Watson is a writer and technology critic. She is an affiliate with the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University.

Sara writes and speaks about emerging issues in the intersection of technology, culture, and society. Her writing appears in the Atlantic, Wired, the Washington Post, Slate, Motherboard, and other publications. She presents at technology conferences around the globe, including SXSW and O’Reilly Strata.

Sara began her career as an enterprise technology analyst at The Research Board (Gartner, Inc.), exploring the implications of technological trends—like cloud computing, collaboration software, and big data—for Fortune 500 CIOs.

She was recently a research fellow at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University. She holds an MSc in the Social Science of the Internet with distinction from the Oxford Internet Institute, where her award-winning thesis examined the personal data practices of the Quantified Self community. She graduated from Harvard College magna cum laude with a joint degree in English and American literature and film studies. Her interdisciplinary work continues to draw from media studies, science and technology studies, anthropology, and literature.

Sara is based in Singapore and tweets @smwat.

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Speaker Video

Sara Watson: Technology, Personlization, & Optimization

Big data, algorithms, and personal data: “Taking Personalisation Personally,” exploring the human impacts of data as it is collected, interpreted, and used for decision making and personalisation in our lives.

Artificial intelligence: “The AI Story So Far,” on the dominant apocalyptic narratives we focus on about AI, and why we need more grounded, practical stories to understand our human-machine relationships with AI.

Smart Cities: Grounded Singapore case study as a test bed for smart city issues of the future.

Wearable tech and the Quantified Self: What consumers do with data, and what we can learn about making data accessible and manageable for users.

Moderating and interviewing: Comfortable interviewing leaders for book talks and leading discussions on conference panels. Passionate about facilitating insightful conversations on a wide range of technology and society subjects. 

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