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Aspen Digital is embarking on a new project that builds upon our longstanding work on artificial intelligence. The new Virtually Human project seeks to inform and inspire the ways we design, develop, deploy, and monitor the positive impacts and challenges of continuous and ubiquitous digital connection on individuals and society. 

We recognize this as a vital issue that has implications that range from individual well-being and mental health—to the future of social connection—to reshaping both business and societal institutions. It represents a vexing set of issues that requires collaboration among health and medicine professionals, technologists, civic organizations, academics, community advocates, and policy makers, alike. Our goal is to elevate the discussion and to consider new innovative frames of thinking to influence appropriate interventions (e.g. technical, legal, and or normative). The global pandemic and the civil unrest has only heightened the stakes for getting this right.

Our goal is to build on existing work in this space, identify gaps, and to drive towards constructive outcomes. 

For questions about the Virtually Human project, please contact Kristine Gloria


Dr. Kristine Gloria joined the Aspen Digital team in 2016. Currently, Kristine leads the development of the Emerging Technologies Initiative, which includes the Roundtable on Artificial Intelligence and the Virtually Human Project. Prior to joining the Aspen Institute, Kristine served as a visiting researcher for the Internet Policy Research Initiative housed within the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) at MIT in Cambridge, MA. Kristine also held a position as a Privacy Research Fellow with the Startup Policy Lab (SPL) and a fellowship with the Center for Society, Technology and Policy at UC-Berkeley. Her work focused on privacy-by-design and municipal drone policymaking with the city of San Francisco.

Kristine holds a PhD in Cognitive Science from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where she explored practices of information sharing online, commenting on potential implications for both privacy policies and future technology design. She also holds a Bachelor’s in Journalism and a M.A. in Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin.

Juan Albertorio
David Ball
Jeff Collins
Kevin Connors
Susan Crown Exchange
Vilas Dhar
Patrick J. McGovern Foundation
Steve Downs
Building H
Esther Dyson
Michael Fitzpatrick
Sandro Galea
Dean for the School of Public Health at Boston University
John C. Havens
Cyrus Hodes
Future Society
Mira Lane
Jamie Lockwood
David Ryan Polgar
All Tech is Human
Toby Redshaw
Tobias Rees
Berggruen Institute
Tony Salvador
Jonathan Stray
Partnership on AI
Dali Szostak
Carrie Ting
Sherry Turkle
Sarah Watson
Mozilla Foundation
Songyee Yoon
NCSoft/Stanford HAI
  • What are the biggest opportunities and gaps to consider regarding the impact of continuous and ubiquitous digital connection on individuals and society?
  • To what extent is there a need for a shared language among key stakeholders?
  • How can we begin to define success in this space? 

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