Member Database

Shobita Parthasarathy

Professor of Public Policy, Director of the Science, Technology, and Public Policy program
Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy
Public Policy

AB, Biology, University of Chicago (also fulfilled degree requirements in Public Policy)
MA, Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University
PhD, Science and Technology Studies, Cornell University (minor: Government)

Shobita Parthasarathy is a professor of public policy. Her research focuses on the comparative and international politics and policy related to science and technology. She is interested in how to develop innovation, and innovation policy, to better achieve public interest and social justice goals. Much of her previous work has focused on the governance of emerging science and technology, particularly those that have uncertain environmental, social, ethical, political, and health implications. She is the author of multiple articles and two books: Building Genetic Medicine: Breast Cancer, Technology, and the Comparative Politics of Health Care (MIT Press 2007; paperback 2012); and Patent Politics: Life Forms, Markets, and the Public Interest in the United States and Europe (University of Chicago Press, 2017). Parthasarathy has participated in innovation policy discussions in both the U.S. and Europe; most notably, her work influenced the 2013 U.S. Supreme Court case challenging the patentability of human genes. Her new research project focuses on the political machineries that shape the development and decision-making related to technologies for the poor, with a focus on India. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago and master’s and PhD from Cornell University.

Community and Professional Affiliation(s)

American Association for the Advancement of Science | American Sociological Association | Science and Democracy Network | Society for the Social Studies of Science

Research Area(s)

Genetics / Genomics / other OMICS | Health disparities | Health services research | Population Health | Public policy and social science

Grants

  • Principal investigator of: Postdoctoral Fellowship Program in Science and Technology Policy at the Ford School of Public Policy
  • Principal investigator of: Scholar's Award: Crisis at the Patent Office: Rethinking the Patentability of Biotechnology in Comparative Perspective
  • Principal investigator of: Rethinking Computer Science Education: Bringing Public Interest Technology into Undergraduate and Postdoctoral Training