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Science & Beyond Plenary Explores the Intersection of Ethics and HPC

Science and ethics have always been intertwined, as scientific practices must be unbiased and held to the highest standards of honesty and integrity.

As we look at the many ways HPC expands beyond scientific and academic communities to inform other industries, addressing ethics in the development, application, and use of technology has never been more critical. The rapid growth of HPC and the intertwined issues of AI shine a light on new moral issues that shape how academics, researchers, and applied scientists conduct their work in building complex multidisciplinary computations.

In the highly-anticipated session, five leaders in computational research and technical policy will discuss the ethical responsibilities and obligations that can – and must – guide the future trajectory of HPC. The issues and challenges are many, such as algorithmic bias in machine learning, scientific validation and reproducibility, and the importance of expanding diversity in the scientific community to avoid unintentional consequences.

The panelists will explore these and other thought-provoking topics intended to broaden the awareness of the role of scientific ethics in our fast-growing field.


Daniel A. Reed is a computer scientist and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs (Provost) at the University of Utah. As director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), he spearheaded creation of the TeraGrid, which became XSEDE. Dr. Reed also helped shape Microsoft’s vision for technology innovations in cloud computing and its policy engagements with governments and institutions as Corporate Vice President for Technology Policy and Extreme Computing. He is currently a member of the National Science Board (NSB).


Cristin Flynn Goodwin is the Assistant General Counsel of the Digital Security Unit in Microsoft’s Customer Security and Trust organization, working with the Threat Context & Analysis and Cybersecurity Legal teams. She leads Microsoft’s efforts to understand nation state attacks against customers and the computing ecosystem and disrupt nation state attacks, working closely with the Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC).

Tony Hey is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, the Association for Computing Machinery, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Currently the Chief Data Scientist at STFC’s Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Dr. Hey previously served as Corporate Vice President for Technical Computing at Microsoft. At the University of Southampton, his parallel computing research group designed and built one of the first distributed memory message-passing computers using innovative Inmos transputers.

Ellen Ochoa, the first Latina to go to space as a NASA astronaut in 1993, is the former Director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. Before her 30-year NASA career, Dr. Ochoa was a research engineer and inventor and holds three patents for optical systems. She currently serves as Chair of the National Science Board and has been inducted into the International Air & Space Hall of Fame.

Joel Saltz is a leader in research on advanced information technologies for large-scale data science and biomedical/scientific research. He is the founding chair of three departments of Biomedical Informatics – at Ohio State University, Emory University, and his current institution, SUNY Stony Brook. A fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics, Dr. Saltz has developed several innovative pathology informatics methods and big data innovations.

The Science & Beyond Plenary will take place – in-person and via live-stream – on Monday, November 15, 2021, at 5:30 pm CST. All registered attendees and exhibitors are welcome to attend.

Joan Snoderly, SC21 Plenary Productions

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