Nick Sinai

Nick Sinai pic.jpeg

Nick Sinai is an Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, and head instructor of DPI-663.  Nick came to Harvard from the Obama White House, where he was U.S. Deputy CTO.  Nick’s research, writing, and teaching is focused on technology and innovation in government—including co-authoring a 2016 Harvard Business School case about the U.S. Digital Service.  Nick is a faculty affiliate of the Shorenstein Center, where he served as the inaugural Walter Shorenstein Media and Democracy Fellow, researching and writing about data as a public good.

Nick helped start and is a faculty affiliate of Digital HKS, an independent project at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs that is committed to understanding the relationship between digital technology, data, and rights as it relates to the public interest.

Nick is a faculty mentor to the Harvard Open Data Project, a group of Harvard College students showcasing uses of Harvard University data—including predicting the results of the undergraduate student government election.  Nick is a Senior Advisor at Insight Venture Partners and a board member of BrightBytes.

Nick is an advisor to Coding It Forward, a student-led nonprofit that runs the Civic Digital Fellowship, a new pipeline into public service for technology students. Nick is also an advisor to Upsolve, a Brooklyn-based nonprofit that improves consumer access to Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection.


Course Assistants

Jon Truong

Jon Truong is exploring opportunities for collaboration between the private, public, and non-profit sector to increase civic engagement, elevate public discourse, and promote equity. He most recently worked with the digital team at the City of Boston to overhaul the Public Records Request system and the Santa Monica Digital Transformation division on promoting smarter data use. He is currently a Master in Public Policy candidate at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Kate Spies

Kate is currently a Masters in Design Engineering student at Harvard’s Engineering and Design schools. Following undergraduate engineering studies, Kate was commissioned into the United States Marine Corps where her training focused on leadership and flying acumen. Kate’s early career as a pilot included experience flying over 3000 hours, leading more than 100 combat missions, and ultimately a selection to attend the United States Naval Test Pilot School. As an experimental test pilot, Kate integrated aeronautical engineering, high-risk test and evaluation, and program management to guide Department of Defense acquisition decision-making. She bridged the gap from conception to employment of revolutionary new technologies. Kate’s research at Harvard is centered on smart materials, innovative design, and autonomous systems with a specialized focus on the electric-VTOL space. Outside of academia, Kate loves spending time on adventures, running, practicing yoga, reading quietly, and crafting savory vegan dishes.


Thank you to everyone who has made this course possible, including: Stephanie Nguyen, Brian Lefler, Hadley DeBello, Alisha Ukani, Angel Quicksey, Chante Lantos-Swett, Dana Chisnell, Mary Ann Brody, Ryan Panchadsaram, Kate Krontiris, Ben Getson, Ben Willman, Eric Waldo, Erie Meyer, Marina Martin, Wendy Lin, Brandon Ward, Jess Colarossi, and all of our past students and clients.