Announcing our 2022-23 Fellows!

April 28, 2022

The Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics is delighted to announce our new cohorts of fellows for 2022-23 and looks forward to welcoming them this fall. They are an exciting group and we are thrilled to have them join our community.


Yael Assor (Tel Aviv University Exchange Fellow) is a socio-cultural and medical anthropologist who studies how culturally-dependent moral views shape medical policy tools. Assor's doctoral research (UCLA, 2020) explored how the ideal of "objectivity" as ethically appropriate conduct shapes the decisions made at the Israeli Public Committee for the Enhancement of the Medical Services Basket (known in Israel as Va'adat Sal Hatrufot). Her current research examines the ethical assumptions underlying the notion of "medical effectiveness" in cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA), a central policy-making tool for determining healthcare funding allocation worldwide. While CEA aims to provide a standardized, value-free measurement of different health technologies, its calculation requires making various assumptions about what is "good health" and who should determine it. Alongside her academic endeavors, Assor volunteers as the founding director of the Inter-Organizational Forum for Reducing Health Gaps in East Jerusalem, an initiative attending to the stark gaps in community healthcare services between the two parts of Jerusalem.

Netta Barak-Corren (Visiting Fellow) is a legal scholar and cognitive scientist, focusing on empirical and behavioral analysis of constitutional and public law. She is a Professor of Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a member of the Federmann Center for the Study of Rationality. Barak-Corren received her first degree in Law and in Cognitive Science from the Hebrew University (Valedictorian and three-time recipient of the Albert Einstein and Rector awards). She then clerked for the Chief Justice of the Israeli Supreme Court, Hon. Dorit Beinish, and pursued doctoral studies at Harvard, graduating in 2016. You can read more about her work, awards, grants, publications on her personal website.

Eric Bayruns García (Fellow-in-Residence) is an assistant professor in the philosophy department at California State University, San Bernardino. He specializes in philosophy of race, epistemology, and Latin American philosophy. His research focuses on epistemological and ethical issues raised by racial injustice and colonialism. While at the Center, he will work on three projects. The first project is a monograph that explains why historical actors such as Christopher Columbus and Robert E. Lee are properly blamed by current-day individuals for their immoral actions and racist beliefs. In the second project, he will explain why so many Americans hold false beliefs or lack knowledge of racial injustice because of how racial injustice itself affects Americans’ sources of information about it, such as the United States’ K-12 educational curriculum and its news media. The third project concerns the explanatory value of Afro-Latinx identity for understanding both US society and the experience of Dominican Latinx persons in the Americas.

Aviv Derri (Tel Aviv University Exchange Fellow) received her PhD in History and Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies from New York University (2021), where she specialized in the history of the Ottoman Empire and in the comparative study of empires in the modern era. She is interested in the social, political, and cultural history of capitalism in the Middle East from a global perspective. Based on her doctoral dissertation, her book project examines the rise of new financial markets and provincial public debt in nineteenth century Ottoman Damascus, foregrounding the role of tax-farmers, merchant families, and Jewish financiers of the hajj. This work explores local and inter-imperial conflicts and anxieties about political belonging and sovereignty, risk and uncertainty, and the boundaries of financial activity—reflected, most notably, in the distinction between interest and usury—in a period of European financial expansion and major development projects at home. Aviv is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics and at the School of Historical Studies at Tel Aviv University. Starting in Fall 2022, she will hold a postdoctoral research fellowship at the Martin Buber Society of Fellows, Jerusalem.

Michael Hannon (Fellow-in-Residence) is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Nottingham. Before that, he was Deputy Director of the Institute of Philosophy in London. He received his MPhil and PhD from the University of Cambridge and his BA from York University. His work investigates a variety of issues in epistemology and political philosophy, including the role of truth in politics, political empathy, identity-expressive discourse, skepticism, rationality, and the value of knowledge. In 2019, Oxford University Press published his first book, What's the Point of Knowledge? He also co-edited Political Epistemology (Oxford University Press, 2021) and The Routledge Handbook of Political Epistemology (Routledge, 2021). At the EJ Safra Center at Harvard University, Michael will pursue a project titled "Political Badmouthing: The Role of Dishonest Discourse in Politics."

Robert C. Hughes (Fellow-in-Residence) is an Assistant Professor of Legal Studies and Business Ethics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He received his PhD in Philosophy from UCLA and he has completed post-doctoral fellowships in the Department of Bioethics at the National Institutes of Health and in UCLA's Law and Philosophy Program. His research is in moral and legal philosophy and focuses on the ethics of obeying and enforcing the law and the possibility of consensual but wrongful exploitation. As a Fellow at the EJ Safra Center for Ethics, he will pursue two related projects, one on the conditions in which there is an ethical duty to pay a living wage and one on the just enforcement of laws against wage theft.

Hon-Lam Li (Visiting Fellow) is Emeritus Professor in the Department of Philosophy, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. He received his BA in philosophy from Princeton University, MA in jurisprudence from Oxford University, and his PhD in philosophy from Cornell University in 1987. Before starting his career as a philosopher, he had practiced law as a barrister-at-law in Hong Kong. Hon was Fulbright Senior Visiting Researcher in the Department of Philosophy at Harvard University during the academic year 2010-11. His research interests are practical ethics (including bioethics), ethics, political philosophy, and philosophy of law. His publications have appeared in The American Journal of Bioethics, Public Affairs Quarterly, Criminal Justice Ethics, Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, World Policy Journal, and Asian Bioethics Review. His articles, “Contractualism and the Death Penalty” and “Contractualism and Punishment,” are the 4th and 5th “most read” articles published in Criminal Justice Ethics respectively. Hon’s most recent publication is “Rawlsian Political Liberalism, Public Reason, and Bioethics” in Hon-Lam Li and Michael Campbell, eds., Public Reason and Bioethics: Three Perspectives (Palgrave Macmillan, 2021). His current project focuses on contractualism and aggregation. You can read more on his personal webpage.

David O’Brien (Fellow-in-Residence) is an assistant professor of philosophy at Tulane University, jointly appointed in Tulane’s political economy program. He also currently serves as Interim Director of the Center for Ethics and Public Affairs at Tulane’s Murphy Institute. David has research interests in normative ethics, political philosophy, metaethics, and the philosophy of education. His recent work focuses on questions in the ethics of distribution—in particular, questions about the nature, scope, and basis of a moral concern for distributive equality. His work has been published or is forthcoming in the Journal of Moral Philosophy, the Journal of Ethics and Social PhilosophyUtilitasSynthese, and the Journal of the American Philosophical Association. While at Harvard, David will be working on a project that investigates the prospects of explaining the non-instrumental badness of distributive inequality.

Katherine Peeler (Fellow-in-Residence, jointly with the HMS Center for Bioethics) is an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and an attending physician in the Division of Medical Critical Care at Boston Children’s Hospital. Additionally, she is a Medical Expert with the non-profit Physicians for Human Rights where she has volunteered for 20 years providing pro bono forensic evaluations to assist asylum-seekers with their immigration cases and testifying about conditions inside US immigration detention centers. Dr. Peeler’s research and advocacy interests center around the health and health rights of relief-seeking immigrants in the US She recently completed her master’s degree in medical anthropology at Harvard, studying how current US immigration systems and structures propagate the already liminal status of relief-seeking children, making it almost impossible for those charged with caring for such children to truly do so. During her year at the EJ Safra Center, Dr. Peeler hopes to explore these issues further in a book provisionally entitled “Corrupting Care and Fracturing Families: US government treatment of children seeking immigration relief.”

Elizabeth Chloe Romanis (Fellow-in-Residence, jointly with the HLS Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics) is an Assistant Professor of Biolaw and Co-Director of Gender and Law at Durham University, UK. Before this, Chloe completed her PhD in Bioethics and Medical Jurisprudence at the University of Manchester. She passed with no corrections and was awarded the University’s Distinguished Achievement Medal for Humanities Research Student of the Year in 2020. Chloe also has an LLB (Hons) and LLM in Healthcare Law and Ethics from the University of Manchester. Chloe does research in healthcare law and bioethics with a particular interest in reproduction and the body (abortion, gestation, pregnancy, and birth). Her principal publications concern artificial womb technology and are published in leading journals including the Medical Law Review, Journal of Law and the Biosciences, and the Journal of Medical Ethics. Chloe has also published widely on matters related to abortion and childbirth, including her first co-authored book on telemedical abortion published by Oxford University Press in 2021. As a Fellow-in-Residence at the EJ Safra Center for Ethics and the Petrie-Flom Center for Bioethics, Chloe will work on her project entitled “Biotechnology, Gestation, and Legal and Social Infrastructure.”


Jamillah Bowman Williams (Visiting Fellow) received her JD from Stanford Law School and her PhD in Sociology from Stanford. Her research focuses on contemporary bias and the law, with an emphasis on the nature of bias (implicit, explicit, and structural), the effectiveness of antidiscrimination law, and the capacity of law to promote compliance and social change. More specifically, she uses social psychological theory and empirical analysis to examine the impact of antidiscrimination law on the individuals it was intended to protect. While her core scholarly interests focus on workplace law and policy, her research is also relevant to the broader field of law and society. She has published or has forthcoming articles in the Georgetown Law Journal, California Law Review, Boston College Law Review, University of Chicago Legal Forum, Washington Law Review, Iowa Law Review, Williams and Mary Law Review, Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, and the Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal. She has also authored several white papers and reports and her work has been featured by a range of media outlets. In 2021, she received the Michael J. Zimmer Memorial Award for a rising scholar who values workplace justice and community, and who has made significant contributions to labor & employment law scholarship. Williams has also been named a 2022 Georgetown University Gender + Justice Fellow to further interdisciplinary research on intersectional issues of gender, racial, and economic justice.

Graduate Fellows

Britta Clark is a PhD candidate in philosophy. Her research addresses a range of ethical and political issues raised by the climate crisis. Her dissertation aims to develop aspects of a theory of intergenerational justice that is fit to guide climate policy in deeply unjust circumstances. In particular, she is interested in thinking clearly about the intergenerational dimensions of solar geoengineering, a technology that could abate some of the short-term impacts of climate change yet also comes with significant long-term risks. Prior to Harvard, she earned a master’s in philosophy at the University of Otago in New Zealand on a Fulbright Fellowship and a bachelor’s degree at Bates College in Maine.

Tatiana Geron is a PhD candidate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education studying the ethical complexity of teacher decision-making. Her dissertation investigates how teachers resolve ethical dilemmas within the unique temporal, spatial, and social environment of the classroom and interpret their core values in relation to unjust school contexts. Prior to joining the doctoral program, Tatiana taught middle school English Language Arts in Boston and Brooklyn. She holds a BA in Political and Social Thought from the University of Virginia and an MEd from the Boston Teacher Residency.

Dimitrios Halikias is a PhD Candidate in the Harvard Department of Government, where he studies political philosophy and the history of political thought. His dissertation studies the complaint—common throughout the nineteenth century—that modern subjects have become “slaves without masters.” He studies this anxiety by tracing the way various critics of bourgeois liberalism appealed to an ideal of medieval feudalism to diagnose the character of modern, depersonalized domination. His related research interests cover topics in democratic theory, American political thought, and debates in the history of capitalism. He received a BA in 2016 from Yale College.

Yunhyae Kim is a PhD candidate in Philosophy, with primary interests at the intersection of social/political philosophy, democratic theory, and political economy. Her dissertation examines the justificatory relation between political democracy and economic hierarchies, paying special attention to the ways in which state political institutions are structurally constrained by the social organization of production. Her long-term project develops a theory of democracy in which the democratic political order is co-constituted by the organization of production and the organization of electoral-legislative politics. Yunhyae holds BAs in philosophy and economics from Seoul National University. She was a research fellow (2021-22) at the Rutgers Institute for the Study of Employee Ownership and Profit Sharing. At Harvard, she has served as a Department Writing Fellow, a teaching fellow for introductory ethics, and a research assistant for a project on relational egalitarianism and capital ownership at Harvard Business School.

Joel Martinsson is a Fulbright scholar and PhD Candidate in the Department of Political Science at Linnaeus University, Sweden, where he studies behavioral and theoretical political ethics using a mixed-method approach. In his dissertation, Joel empirically explores to what extent, and in what ways, ethical understandings impact how Swedish parliamentarians make decisions when faced with political ethics dilemmas in the democratic policy-making process. Prior to joining the EJ Safra Center for Ethics and the lab of Professor Joshua Greene as a visiting graduate student, Joel held positions in the Swedish Parliament both as a visiting research fellow and as a committee officer in the Committee on Industry and Trade.

Leah Pierson is an MD-PhD student at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in the Department of Global Health and Population. She is interested in public health ethics, the sociology of bioethics, and ethics education. Her dissertation focuses on ethical issues related to global health priority setting. Specifically, she is researching how global health actors should account for uncertainty and the changing health needs of future populations in setting priorities. Before starting her MD-PhD, she earned a BA in Human Rights from Brown University and completed a pre-doctoral fellowship in the National Institutes of Health Department of Bioethics.

Jayshree Sarathy is a PhD candidate in Computer Science and a secondary field student in Science & Technology Studies at Harvard. Her work interrogates the development and deployment of "ethical AI" technologies. Her dissertation project focuses on privacy-preserving data analysis, exploring the tensions between ‘differential privacy’ in theory and in practice along social, technical, and political dimensions. She shows that conforming to the ideal of differential privacy requires re-thinking every stage of the data science process, from survey design and statistical inference to the roles and responsibilities of data analysts themselves. Her work also explores how ideals such as privacy and transparency pose challenges to the legitimacy of national data infrastructures.

Ethics Pedagogy Fellows

Alysha Banerji is a doctoral student at Harvard Graduate School of Education in the Culture, Institutions and Society concentration and an editor at the Harvard Educational Review. Her research focuses on the ethics of immigration and civic education for cosmopolitan citizenship. Before coming to Harvard, Alysha worked on college access in the US and managed the national expansion of the India School Leadership Institute, an organization that provides leadership training for principals of public and low-income private schools across India. She also worked as an Assistant Education Specialist with UNESCO in Santiago, Chile, supporting the implementation of the Education 2030 Agenda in the Latin America and Caribbean region. Alysha holds a BA in Philosophy from Hamilton College and an MSEd in International Education Development from the University of Pennsylvania.

Sophie Gibert is a PhD candidate in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at MIT. Her research focuses on the ethics of behavioral influence, including manipulation and paternalism, and she is especially interested in the moral obligations that we have toward people when they are not reasoning well. Sophie has taught in the Embedded EthiCS program at Harvard, co-directed the Experiential Ethics course at MIT, and served as a teaching assistant for MIT courses in topics such as political philosophy, the philosophy of mind, and the philosophy of religion. Before graduate school, Sophie was a pre-doctoral fellow in the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center Department of Bioethics and studied philosophy and biology at Wellesley College.

Garry S. Mitchell is a doctoral student at Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Stone PhD Scholar in the Inequality and Wealth Concentration through the Harvard Kennedy School. Previously, he worked as a middle school teacher in New York City. His work lies at the nexus of history, sociology, and philosophy of education and aims to contribute to our understanding of education, particularly in elite settings, as a vehicle for broader social, economic, and racial uplift. Garry’s research commitment to educational justice is inextricably linked to his lifelong identity as a student and African-American male, descended from enslaved peoples in the United States, alongside his professional identity as a pedagogue.

Malcolm Morano is a PhD Candidate in Philosophy. His work is currently focused on the relationship between the individual and the collective, and the role this plays in the foundations of ethics. He also has research interests in political philosophy, particularly concerning democracy and ideology. Currently a Media & Design Fellow at the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning, Malcolm has also taught courses on the ethics of climate change, inequality, and epistemology at Harvard. He holds a BA in Philosophy and Music from Fordham University.

James Rosenberg is a PhD student in the Harvard Government Department studying political theory. He is particularly interested in the intersection of political philosophy and American political economy. His dissertation project considers how theories of society in the liberal egalitarian tradition affect thinkers’ visions for institutional design. As a Teaching Fellow, he has taught courses on American constitutional law, justice, and American democracy. James graduated with Highest Honors from the University of California, Berkeley and holds a BA in Philosophy, Political Science, and Legal Studies.

Initiative Fellows

Benjamin A. Barsky (Justice, Health and Democracy Initiative Fellow) is a PhD student in Health Policy at Harvard University. Ben is also a Legal Research Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania’s Scattergood Program for Applied Ethics of Behavioral Health Care. His research focuses on the areas of health law and justice, mental health policy, and disability rights. He received his JD and Master of Bioethics from the University of Pennsylvania and BA in Public Health and Psychology from Johns Hopkins.

Maya Holden Cohen (Design Studio Initiative Fellow) is a fourth-year PhD student at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE), where she studies youth civic formation and the relationship between civic education and democratic resilience. Specifically, her work explores the question: What role can (and should) civic education play in addressing the longstanding weaknesses, current threats, and new possibilities confronting American democracy? She is especially interested in the ways student voices can contribute to this inquiry. While at HGSE, Maya has worked as a graduate researcher at the EJ Safra Center for Ethics, where she helped launch the Intercollegiate Civil Disagreement Partnership. She was awarded the EJ Safra Center’s Ethics Pedagogy Fellowship for the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 academic years. She served on the editorial board of the Harvard Educational Review from 2019-2021. Prior to her doctoral training, Maya worked at Northwestern University’s Children and Family Justice Center (CFJC), collaborating with attorneys, community groups, currently and formerly incarcerated people, and their families to end life sentences for youth in Illinois. Maya holds a BA in English from Barnard College and an EdM from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.