My work broadly falls in the fields of AI and algorithms, with a focus on equity and social good concerns. Specifically, I design and analyze algorithmic, discrete optimization, network-based, and computational techniques to improve access to opportunity for historically disadvantaged communities. As part of this research mission, I co-founded and co-organize Mechanism Design for Social Good (MD4SG), an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional research initiative and workshop series with participants from over 100 institutions in 20 countries.
My research is informed by collaborations with researchers in related disciplines and domain experts from various government and non-government organizations. Throughout 2019, I have been serving on the NIH Advisory Committee to the Director working group on AI.
Prior to Cornell, I completed an M.S. in applied mathematics from Harvard, an M.A. in mathematics from the University of Cambridge, and a B.A. in mathematics from Harvard College.
I was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia -- home to Lucy, a more sensible time convention, its own alphabet, the birthplace of coffee, and 13 months of sunshine. I am a proud graduate of the Ethiopian National Curriculum. I am passionate about increasing representation and inclusion of marginalized communities in computing. I co-founded and serve on the Board of Directors for Black in AI, a non-profit organization working to improve diversity in the field of AI.