Ford School welcomes Yousif Hassan as faculty

August 21, 2023

Yousif Hassan will join the Ford School faculty as an assistant professor in January 2024. Hassan’s work examines the social, economic, and political implications of emerging technologies including artificial intelligence (AI) and data focusing on the relationship between race, digital technology, and technoscientific capitalism. His most recent project investigates the development of AI and its innovation ecosystem across multiple African countries focusing on data governance and the sociotechnical knowledge production practices of the state, scientists, and the tech industry. He will work closely with the Ford School’s Science, Technology, and Public Policy program.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the amazing and exciting work happening within the Ford school at U-M and begin working with the faculty and students to explore the different ways in which the tools of public policy can be used to ensure equitable development of technology,” Hassan said.  “In particular, I’m excited to collaborate with the Ford school community to continue my work examining the challenges and opportunities of AI technology in Africa and exploring methods and policy approaches that center issues of racial and social justice in digital innovation and data governance in the Global South.”

“We are thrilled to welcome Yousif as part of the university-wide Racial Justice Cluster initiative,” Dean Celeste Watkins-Hayes said. Yousif brings with him a focus on science and technology policy and will allow the Ford School to deepen our research, teaching, and policy engagement work around structural and systematic racism and the intersection of technology.”

Hassan is a former Illinois distinguished fellow at the School of Information Sciences and a faculty affiliate with the Center for African Studies, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. He was a research fellow at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He started his career as a software engineer, including as both a manager in multinational corporations and a co-founder of a tech company focused on AI, blockchain, and digital transformation, which led him to the academic field of science and technology studies. He holds a PhD in Science and Technology Studies from York University in Toronto.