Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Alex Peysakhovich is thriving at Facebook

Here's Alex Peysakhovich, on a list of  top 30 thinkers under 30


"Alexander Peysakhovich is technically a behavioral economist, but he bristles a bit at being defined that narrowly. He's a scientist in Facebook's artificial intelligence research lab, as well as a prolific scholar, having posted five papers in 2016 alone. He has a Ph.D. from Harvard University, where he won a teaching award, and has published articles in the New York Times, Wired, and several prestigious academic journals.

Despite these accomplishments, Peysakhovich says, "I'm most proud of the fact that I've managed to learn enough of lots of different fields so that I can work on problems that I'm interested in using those methods. I've co-authored with economists, game theorists, computer scientists, neuroscientists, psychologists, evolutionary biologists, and statisticians."

Peysakhovich's interdisciplinary work is driven by his deep interest in understanding decision-making—both human and machine—and by his desire to figure out how artificial intelligence can improve our decision-making processes. He builds tools that help people make better choices, and machines that can turn data into, as he puts it, "not just correlations but actual causal relationships."

The photo in the article comes from Alex's dissertation defense at Harvard (in 2012, when I was already at Stanford, hence that particular picture...)

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