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UC San Diego’s David Danks appointed to national AI Advisory Committee

David DanksUC San Diego Department of Philosophy and Halıcıoğlu Data Science Institute (HDSI) professor David Danks has been invited to serve as a member of the National AI Advisory Committee (NAIAC) as an inaugural appointee, for a three-year term.

NAIAC is tasked with providing advice to the President and the National AI Initiative Office about artificial intelligence in the United States. The new advisory committee will provide recommendations on topics including:

  •     the current state of U.S. AI competitiveness,
  •     progress in implementing and providing updates to the initiative, including leveraging its resources,
  •     the state of science around AI,
  •     issues related to AI workforce,
  •     the adequacy of the national AI research and development strategic plan,
  •     adequacy of addressing societal issues,
  •     opportunities for international cooperation,
  •     issues related to accountability and legal rights, and
  •     how AI can enhance opportunities for diverse geographic regions.

The advice and recommendations will include not only technical and research priorities but also the ethical, legal, and societal issues that arise through the use of AI. The first meeting of the 27-person NAIAC team includes members from academia, industry and civil society, and will be open to the public via webcast.

“It is an honor to serve as an advisor for the national strategy on AI research, development and use," said Danks. “AI is transforming modern society, and we need to ensure that AI works for the benefit of all, not only the few. The NAIAC provides an opportunity to help guide the ways that AI is impacting our lives.”

Holding a joint appointment with HDSI and the School of Arts and Humanities, Danks is Professor of Data Science and Philosophy, and an affiliate faculty member in Computer Science and Engineering. He is also a member of the UC San Diego Institute for Practical Ethics, serving on its advisory board.

Danks received an A.B. in Philosophy from Princeton University, and is an alum of UC San Diego, receiving his Ph.D. from the university’s Department of Philosophy. His turn towards the data science field was driven by his interest in how a "cognitive agent" — whether human, machine or animal — can understand and make decisions in an incredibly complicated world.

“Curiosity is, in my view, one of the most important traits for anyone to have,” he said. “Regardless of one’s major or career, we should all strive to be continually curious. Importantly, that means not just asking lots of questions, but also working to try to find answers to those questions.”

Welcome our 2021-2022 New Faculty

New FacultyGet acquainted with the incoming faculty cohort in the School of Arts and Humanities for the academic year 2021 – 2022. Appointed to five of our six departments after a rigorous and competitive selection process, your new faculty members reflect the foundational strengths of our school and share the professional commitment of our student-centered, research-focused and service-oriented public university.


Awards and Honors

School of Arts and Humanities faculty members have received many prestigious awards and honors, including endowed chairs at the university. Click on each honor to view the recipients.

Pulitzer Prize / MacArthur Fellows / Guggenheim Fellows

Pulitzer Prize

MacArthur Fellows

Guggenheim Fellows

NEH Fellows / ACLS Fellows

National Endowment for the Humanities Fellows

American Council of Learned Societies Fellows

Tony Award / National Humanities Medal / National Book Critics Circle Award

National Humanities Center Fellows / Ford Foundation Fellows

National Humanities Center Fellows

Ford Foundation Fellows

UC and UC San Diego Awards

UC San Diego Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award

For Senate Members

For Non-Senate Members

UC San Diego Chancellor's Associates Faculty Excellence Award

UC San Diego Academic Senate Faculty Research Lecturer

UC San Diego Hellman Fellows

UCSD Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action and Diversity Award

UC Panunzio Distinguished Emeriti Award

  • 1996: Avrum Stroll, History

UC President's Research Fellowship in the Humanities

Endowed Chairs

Endowed chairs are highly honored academic positions that attract and support distinguished faculty. Information on Endowed Chairs.


  • Chair in Studies in Ancient Jewish Civilizations: Mira Balberg
  • Herman Wouk Chair of Modern Jewish Studies: Deborah Hertz
  • Hwei-Chih and Julia Hsiu Endowed Chair in Chinese Studies: Karl Gerth
  • Harriet and Louis Bookheim Endowed Chair in Biblical Hebrew and Related Languages: not currently filled
  • Gerry and Jeannie Ranglas Endowed Chair in Ancient Greek History: Denise Demetriou
  • Alkiviadis Vassiliadis Endowed Chair in Byzantine Greek History: Edward Watts
  • Nicholas Family Endowed Chair in Modern Greek History: Thomas Gallant
  • Frank Caylus Grandier Chair in Medieval European History: not currently filled
  • Paul G. Pickowicz Endowed Chair in Modern Chinese History: Micah Muscolino




  • Valtz Family Chair in Philosophy: Richard Arneson
  • Allison Endowed Chair: currently unfilled

Theatre and Dance

  • Arthur and Molli Wagner Chair in Acting: currently unfilled