Kathy Pham

Fellow and Faculty, Product and Society

Harvard University

Kathy Pham is a product leader, computer scientist, and founder who has held roles in product management, software engineering, data science, consulting, and leadership in the private, non-profit, and public sector. Her work has spanned Google, IBM, Harris Healthcare, and the federal government at the United States Digital Service at the White House, where she was a founding product and engineering member. She has founded the Ethical Tech Collective, Product and Society, Women in Product Boston, the Cancer Sidekick Foundation, Team Curious, and Unite for Sight Southeast.

Kathy’s expertise lies a the intersection of technology, ethics, and responsibility, with a focus on ethical principles in practice in product management, design, and engineering.

At the Kennedy School, Kathy created and teaches Product Management and Society, and launched Product and Society. Kathy is an Affiliate at the Harvard Berkman Klein Center where she leads the Ethical Tech working group, and focuses on ethics in technology, with an emphasis on engineering culture and computer science curricula. She is also a Fellow at the Shorenstein Center, former Fellow at the Belfer Center, faculty affiliate at the Center for Research on Computation and Society (CRCS) at the Harvard, faculty affiliate with Assembly:Disinformation. As a 2018 fellow of the MIT Media Lab and Harvard Assembly, Kathy co-founded ai-in-the-loop focused on community inclusion in the development of Artificial Intelligence.

At Mozilla, Kathy co-leads the Responsible Computer Science Challenge and in March 2020, co-founded the new Mozilla Builders Fix-the-Internet Incubator, supporting and funding teams and start-ups with promising ideas for a better internet for communities around the world.

Kathy serves and has served on the advisory boards and councils of technology companies, the Anita Borg Institute, World Economic Forum’s Tech Ethics working group, and the “Make the Breast Pump Not Suck” initiative. She is actively involved in leadership with ProductTank and Women in Product. She advises large tech companies, startups, conferences, and non-profits on product, social responsibility, hiring, building teams, and community inclusion.

Kathy has been recognized as First Lady Michelle Obama’s Guest to the State of the Union Address, a finalist in the StarCraft II After Hours Gaming League, an inductee of the Georgia Tech Greek Hall of Fame, and worldwide champion at the Imagine Cup Technology Competition. Kathy holds a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Computer Science from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, Georgia) and Supelec in (Metz, France). Her work has been featured in Fast Company, Wired, Politico, TechCrunch, NPR, VentureBeat, Nguoi Viet, the Huffington Post, and more.

When not on campus, Kathy can be found checking surf reports along the New England coast.

Sessions

Getting chat right: Estonia's grand plan for citizen interaction

05/11/2020 13.30 - 14.10

Breakout TrackChannel 1Breakout session

Estonia has pioneered many digital government fundamentals. Now, in an ambitious project to unify government interactions, the country is launching a chatbot—a single agent that can interact conversationally with citizens. Getting this to work across disconnected departments, and presenting a consistent, accessible interface to users, is a huge challenge. In 2019, Estonia’s CTO, Kristo Vaher,... read more