Denise Caruso (Founder, Executive Director)
Caruso founded the nonprofit Hybrid Vigor Institute in 2000 to study and practice collaboration in the service of new solutions for complex social and scientific problems. She recently published a trade book on risk, public policy and biotechnology, Intervention: Confronting the Real Risks of Genetic Engineering and Life on a Biotech Planet, and continues to work on projects both in academia and the private sector to improve the practice of risk analysis for science and technology-related innovations. Her current interests are focused on new methods for analyzing and mitigating the risks of global infectious disease, and on inventing new methods to connect printed text with electronic media.
Caruso's perspectives on risk were presented in an article commissioned by Harvard Business Review, included in the "HBR List: Breakthrough Ideas for 2005" issue, published in February of that year. Most recently, she was co-editor of a Special Report in HBR's May 2006 Forethought section, called "Preparing for a Pandemic." She works closely with Baruch Fischhoff, a well known risk expert and professor in the Department of Social and Decision Sciences at Carnegie Mellon University. With Fischhoff and two other colleagues, she was co-author of the article, "Expert Judgments of Pandemic Influenza Risks," published in the premier issue of the journal Global Public Health .
She has convened or co-hosted meetings of faculty and investigators for these projects that include world-class natural and social scientists and decision analysts from some of the nation's most prestigious institutions. Case studies have included the risks of xenotransplantation using genetically modified pigs and the risks of pandemic avian influenza, a project funded by the National Science Foundation (SES 0350493), where she served as co-investigator with CMU's Fischhoff.
Along with several schools of public health and corporate sponsors, Hybrid Vigor co-hosted the Pandefense 1.0 meeting in November 2005, which was convened by epidemiologist Larry Brilliant, M.D. (now executive director of the Google Foundation) and the Global Business Network, with the goal of reducing the probability and effects of an influenza pandemic.
She is an affiliated researcher at the Center for Risk Perception and Communication at Carnegie Mellon University, a member of the Global Business Network, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Molecular Sciences Institute and the Independent Media Institute, and is a director emerita of the Electronic Frontier Foundation . She serves on the advisory boards of SustainAbility and Public Knowledge.
A veteran journalist and analyst with more than 15 years experience observing the industries of digital technology and interactive media, Caruso wrote the Technology column for the Monday Information Industries section of The New York Times from 1995 until founding Hybrid Vigor in 2000. She was an early advocate of First Amendment rights online, and one of the first journalists to focus on the intersection of technology, commerce and culture. She holds a bachelors' degree in English from California Polytechnic State University.
Katherine Fulton (Board Secretary)
Fulton is a partner of the Monitor Group and president of the Monitor Institute, the vehicle through which the Group applies its knowledge, expertise, skill and capital to complex social problem solving). Fulton's career interests focus on the use of private resources for public purposes, and the connection between leadership and learning. She has explored these themes through leadership positions in organizational consulting and journalism, and through teaching and volunteer service.
Prior to moving to the Monitor Institute, Katherine was the co-head of the consulting practice at another Monitor company, Global Business Network. During much of the past decade at GBN, she helped organizations in more than 12 industries manage increasing uncertainty. In recent years, her consulting practice increasingly focused on the future of philanthropy and non-profits. She is the co-author of two publications on philanthropy published in 2005, Looking Out for the Future: An Orientation for Twenty-First Century Philanthropists and On the Brink of New Promise: The Future of U.S. Community Foundations. She also co-authored the 2004 publication, What If? The Art of Scenario Thinking for Nonprofits. Her efforts have won her both a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University and a Lyndhurst Foundation prize for community service.
Richard Miller (Board Treasurer)
Miller began his career at the nonprofit Institute For The Future as a researcher for the U.S. Government's Advanced Research Projects Agency. Here he participated in some of the earliest technical design and development of computer based messaging (today's ubiquitous "e-mail") and computer conferencing using the distributed data network called ARPAnet, the precursor to today's Internet. Miller then co-founded Infomedia Corporation, where he was responsible for development and operations of Infomedia's computer messaging, conferencing and information services, and later Telematica, Inc., a consultancy specializing in electronic messaging. As VP of Communications Technology and VP of Business Development for General Magic, he directed technology and commercial strategy for the pioneering startup.
After almost ten years running the venture consultancies Telematica, Inc. and Breo Consulting LLC, Miller co-founded Univa Corporation, an Illinois-based open-source software company where he served as COO for two years until leaving to assume the CEO role of Safe Data Sharing Inc., a Silicon Valley software company providing technology that permits use of sensitive information (such as personally identifying information) without risk of privacy breach.
Oliver Morton (Hybrid Vigor Fellow)
Morton, a Hybrid Vigor Fellow since 2000, is currently the chief news and features editor at Nature. Previously, he was a contributing editor at WIRED and a contributing author to the New Yorker, Discover, Newsweek International, and Talk; to the journals Nature and Science; to the newspapers The Financial Times and The Wall Street Journal; and, to the magazines New Scientist and Prospect. He has previously been the editor-in-chief of Wired UK, special features editor and science and technology editor at The Economist, and managing editor of The Daily Davos, a Newsweek website covering the World Economic Forum's annual meetings. Morton is also the author of the widely acclaimed Mapping Mars (St. Martin's Press, 2002). His most recent book, Eating the Sun: How Light Powers the Planet, will be released in July 2007 by Fourth Estate.
Diana Rhoten, Ph.D. (Co-founder, Hybrid Vigor Fellow)
Rhoten was appointed a Hybrid Vigor Fellow in June 2003 after serving as the Institute's research director since 2002. She joined the Social Science Research Council in January 2004 to develop a new program area called Knowledge Institutions. She is presently serving a sabbatical at the National Science Foundation. While at Hybrid Vigor, she served as lead principal investigator for Hybrid Vigor's National ScienceFoundation-funded pilot study on interdisciplinary research networks and methods, completed in June 2003.
In addition to her research and publications in this area, she works with various academic and non-academic organizations on the design, implementation, and assessment of new forms of collaborative research, work, and training. In this context, she is particularly interested in the implications that current trends in social and natural science research pose for traditional institutions especially as they combine with the many contemporaneous societal and market issues confronting them. For her work in this area, Rhoten was selected as a Sigma Xi Distinguished Lecturer (July 2005-June 2007), an award that honors individuals at the leading edge of science.
Rhoten has a Ph.D. in Social Sciences, Policy, and Educational Practice and an M.A. in Sociology and Organizational Studies from Stanford University, as well as an M.Ed. in International Development Education from Harvard University. Her unique interdisciplinary approach has been funded by grants from the Fulbright Commission, the Stanford University Center for Latin American Studies, and the Stanford University Lieberman Fellowship Committee.