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65 5th Ave, Room 411
New York, NY, 10003
United States

Funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Graduate Institute for Design, Ethnography & Social Thought at the New School incubates advanced transdisciplinary research and practice at the intersection of social theory and design and fosters dialogue on related themes across the university.

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Rishabh Kumar

Rishabh Kumar is a Ph.D. student in the Economics Department at The New School for Social Research working on the microfoundations of technological innovation and the persistence of path dependency in economic processes.

RISHABH KUMAR is a Ph.D. student in Economics at the New School for Social Research. His current research interests include the microfoundations of technological innovation and the persistence of path dependency in economic processes. Prior to joining The New School, he obtained an M.A. in Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi and worked as a consultant for a public-policy think tank for the Indian Government.

The Social Shaping of Technology focuses on how technology innovation is history-dependent, and in particular it takes up the problem of the “lock-in” of inferior technologies. The project considers societies over space (such as regions, cities, or nations), and the tendency of individuals to be myopic about innovative components as they seek to balance radical innovations with institutional conservatism, leading to the slow improvement of inefficient designs and a progressively limited development path. To study the complexities of these elements as they emerge, and as innovators interact with one another, this project will try to simulate “agent-based models” and theories of “rational inattention” using state-of-the-art computing. The goal is ultimately to design intervening mechanisms by which society can break out of inefficient technological bottlenecks.

GRADUATE INSTITUTE FOR DESIGN, ETHNOGRAPHY & SOCIAL THOUGHT, 63 FIFTH AVENUE, NEW YORK, NY 10003