Professor Alan Blackwell

Professor of Interdisciplinary Design at Department of Computer Science and Technology, University of Cambridge

Professor of Interdisciplinary Design, Department of Computer Science and Technology

Dr Alan Blackwell is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Technology Laboratory, Director of the Crucible network for research in interdisciplinary design and Co-Director of the University of Cambridge Global Challenges Initiative, the Cambridge Strategic Research Initiative for the Sustainable Development Goals. He has also served as a non-executive Director of Cambridge Enterprise, the commercialisation subsidiary of the University of Cambridge.

Alan's new book Moral Codes: Designing Alternatives to AI, is to be published in 2024 by MIT Press.

Alan and his team design and build new information technologies, applying current methods from fields such as artificial intelligence, big data visualisation, internet of things and programming language design. Their theoretical interests focus on the fundamentals of human behaviour when interacting with technology.

Alan has a long-standing mission to make meaningful contributions to the lives of the world’s poorest 3 billion people through the design of new technologies, including software that is directly programmable and customizable by end-users, and making IT accessible to those with a wide range of social backgrounds and abilities.

Alan has qualifications in professional engineering, computing and experimental psychology. He has 15 years experience of designing industrial systems, electronic and software products. He has taught design courses and supervised postgraduate design research students in Computing, Architecture, Psychology, Languages, Music, Fine Art and Engineering. He works regularly with social scientists and policy researchers, as well as on the design of next generation digital technologies.

Computer Laboratory

Crucible Research Network