HCE Team

The Human Contexts and Ethics team brings together undergraduates, graduate students, and Data Science Education Program staff to create and integrate HCE curriculum across UC Berkeley courses and into the Discovery and Modules programs.


Margarita Boenig-Liptsin


Margarita (Margo) Boenig-Liptsin (she/her/hers) is the Director of the Human Contexts and Ethics Program in the Division of Computing, Data Science, and Society and Lecturer in the History Department. She teaches about the relationship between technology, power, democracy, and ethics with a foundation in Science, Technology, and Society (STS) to students of in both technical and social science/humanities fields. In addition to teaching, she leads a team that develops the Human Contexts and Ethics (HCE) component of the data science educational program. This work includes translating social science theory and methods for students of all backgrounds, building connections between engineering and social sciences, bringing together faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates at Berkeley into a community of scholars focused on issues of technology and society, and connecting the work of HCE to the San Francisco Bay Area's communities and needs. She is trained in the field of Science, Technology and Society and holds a PhD in History of Science (Harvard University) and in Philosophy (Université Paris-Sorbonne). Her research examines transformations to human identity and citizenship in relation to information technologies across time and cultures.

Ari Edmundson


Ari Edmundson (he/him/his) received his PhD in History from UC Berkeley in May, 2019. Ari's research has focused on the intellectual history of European philosophy, social, political and legal theory, cybernetics, systems theory, and critical theory. His current work investigates how to best conceptualize systemic power in the context of the transformations associated with contemporary "datafied world." Since January 2018, Ari has helped teach and develop pedagogy for the Human Contexts and Ethics of Data course at Berkeley. He is currently a Human Contexts and Ethics Coordinator in the Division of Data Sciences and a Lecturer in the Department of History at UC Berkeley.

Meghna Mukherjee

Graduate Student Researcher

Meghna Mukherjee (she/her/hers) is a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology. Her research interests revolve around the social inequalities arising alongside emerging fertility and genetic technologies. She is particularly interested in understanding how medicalized spaces and technologies are reinforcing social hierarchies and reconstituting health, existence, and reproductive decision-making. Prior to her PhD, Meghna worked in the non-profit and social development field in New York City, and pursued research related to commercial reproductive labor policies in India. Meghna holds a MA in Sociology from UC Berkeley and a BA in Sociology (honors) and Human Rights from Columbia University.

Curriculum Team

Alyssa Sugarman

Team Lead

Alyssa (she/her/hers) is a senior studying Data Science with an emphasis in social policy and law. She’s passionate about the intersection between technology, ethics, and society, especially in the realm of criminal justice and surveillance issues. She manages the Human, Contexts, and Ethics team and focuses on curriculum development and analysis, survey writing and analysis, and website development. When she’s not managing the HCE team you can probably find her cooking or baking, singing, hiking, reading, working with Camp Kesem Berkeley, or watching cartoons.

Anika Cruz

Graphic Designer

Anika (she/her/hers) is a junior studying Data Science with an emphasis in Cognition. She is passionate about design and creating content that furthers the conversation surrounding the ethics and social implications of data. Outside of academics, Anika enjoys painting, cooking, traveling, and hiking.

Sneha Somaya

Curriculum Developer

Sneha (she/her/hers) is a senior majoring in Data Science, concentrating in Economics. She's super passionate about the multidisciplinary education this major provides and is curious about leveraging data to make informed decisions in business and finance. As the importance of data continues to grow she believes it's important for everyone to understand the ethical and social implications of data, and integrating these concepts into technical coursework is an awesome step one! Outside of academics, she enjoys hiking, cooking and photography.

Eva Newsom

Curriculum Developer 

Eva (she/her/hers) is currently a senior majoring in Data Science and minoring in Computer Science with a passion for starting conversation around the ethics and social implications of data and computing. In this team, she helps to create curriculum that is both technically rigorous and socially minded, with the intent of embedding ethics and critical thinking in all stages of developing data science lifecycle. Outside of her studies and HCE work, she enjoys her creative outlets like guitar, painting, or embroidery, or just being outside in the sun at the beach or park.

Sydney Trieu

Curriculum Developer, Communications 

Sydney (they/she) is a senior studying data science with an emphasis in linguistics and minoring in creative writing. They're passionate about telling stories through data and the written word -- particularly in regard to racial justice, education, and accessibility. Outside of their work, Sydney enjoys playing taiko, making Chinese porridge, and hugging their Ikea shark.

Carlos Ortiz

Curriculum Developer

Carlos Ortiz (he/him/his) is an undergraduate studying Data Science with an emphasis in Sustainable Development and Engineering. He is a first-generation powerhouse, as he likes to break boundaries. He is particularly passionate about using apps, data, and infrastructure to uplift and connect communities across the world. On-campus, he's a data science curriculum developer for the Human Context and Ethics program and a uGSI for DATA 8. Off-campus, he serves his home community as co-founder and president of the Baldwin Park Scholar Network, an organization which aims to eliminate boundaries of access to higher education.

Anna Gueorguieva

Undergraduate Researcher

Anna (she/her/hers) is a sophomore majoring in Data Science and Legal Studies. She is passionate about understanding the way which society, technology and law interact. She believes that data science has the ability to help others and create positive changes in our world, however data also requires constant ethical, contextual and legal analysis. Outside of academics, she enjoys reading, art, traveling and exploring obscure places.

Sammy Raucher

Curriculum Developer

Sammy (she/her/hers) is a sophomore from Los Angeles majoring in Political Science with a specialization in Public Policy & Organization and minoring in Data Science. She is passionate about racial justice, gender equity, and LGBTQ+ rights, and is particularly interested in the intersections between these social issues and technology. In her free time, Sammy enjoys music and food. She loves being a part of the HCE team!

Discovery Researchers

Jacob Pashman

Undergraduate Researcher

Jacob Pashman (he/him/his) is a freshman studying computer science with a minor in public policy. He is passionate about the ethics and societal impacts of technology. When he's not studying or conducting research, he enjoys mountain biking and backcountry skiing.

Aryana Far

Undergraduate Researcher

Aryana Far (she/her/hers) is a sophomore studying Data Science, with an emphasis in Cognition. She is particularly interested in exploring issues of mental health and human agency in the context of our "datafied world." She hopes to combine her technical education in computing with her curiosity about the human mind in a way that ultimately fosters collective growth and healing. Beyond academics, Aryana enjoys painting portraits of strangers and singing songs from the 70s.

Karina Nguyen

Undergraduate Researcher

Karina (she/her/hers) is a 3rd year, studying Data Science (Cognition) and Public Policy. She has been researching social and ethical implications of emerging technologies, where she shares in her own blog sémaphore. Crafting and building digital products during her work at the New York Times and Dropbox, she learned how much of responsibility do designers and engineers have to prevent unintended consequences and ensure a safe digital space for all. She is also passionate about the power of storytelling and firmly believes that data needs literacy to combat war crimes, disinformation, structural inequalities. She hopes to continue the journey by researching provably beneficial systems of AI objectives both from technical and HCE perspectives.

Conner Davis

Undergraduate Researcher

Conner Davis (he/him/his) is a senior studying English literature with an emphasis in American studies and research methodology. Currently, he is working on a thesis about the socio-technical imaginary of Facebook's Oculus VR. When he's not working, he loves to spend his time reading, rock climbing, or learning new Python libraries.

Jessica Marie Garcia

Undergraduate Researcher

Jessica (she/her/hers) is a senior majoring in Political Economy with a concentration in Inequality and Data Science. She is passionate about exploring how the implications of technology and data science influence economic, social, political, and racial issues in society. Outside of academics, she enjoys running, traveling, surfing, films, and listening to albums at the beach.

Selina Liu

Undergraduate Researcher

Selina (she/her/hers) is a sophomore majoring in Economics and minoring in Data Science. Her interests lie primarily in the ethical impacts of data and computation, specifically the interaction between the free market and the consumption of data. She is excited to expand her knowledge in both the technical and social aspects of data as well as engaging with her peers in hopefully productive discussions of these aspects. Outside of academics, she can be found watching films, taking photographs, exploring new music, or doing crosswords.

Arda Ulug

Undergraduate Researcher

Arda (she/her/hers) is a second-year double majoring in Business Administration and Data Science. She is passionate about the intersection of technology, business, and society. She is interested in how data science can be used to develop technological innovation that matters: to help society, to reduce inequalities, and to improve quality of life. Outside of academics, she enjoys hiking, playing with her dog, and exploring new food places!


Ollie Downs

Ollie (they/them/theirs) is a 5th Year Master of Information and Data Science student in the School of Information at Cal! They hold many salient identities, including transgender and non-binary, white, and a person passionate about Human Contexts and Ethics of data science. Ollie works with other DSEP teams in the Division, creating and implementing curriculum and meta-curriculum for students across campus. They also work on curating a directory of case studies for teaching and learning. Ollie uses they/them pronouns and also loves making stamps out of linoleum and animal biology!