I'm Kathryn Peters, or Katy, etc.
I love democracy. Voting? Of course. Participatory budgeting? Now we're talking. Citizens' commissions? Public service design? Social movements? All of it. Building equitable access to power is beautiful, messy work.
I speak technology. To be honest, I first learned French and HTML around the same time and preferred French—but HTML opened more opportunities. (I did get to use my French on occasion while working, in IT, for the United Nations.)
Democracy and technology anchor my professional life. I recently left the Center for Information, Technology, & Public Life (CITAP), where I supported a brilliant collective of researchers and their work on how we remake inequality in new technologies, what platforms owe democracy, and digital publics. As CITAP's inaugural executive director, I worked to connect that research with the policymakers, advocates, journalists, technologists, and public who shape our civic and public lives online.
Before CITAP, I co-founded Democracy Works and led operations as it grew to a team of 50 and served millions of voters. You might be one of them—I designed the initial versions of TurboVote and How to Vote. I serve on the board of Democracy Works, the Center for Civic Design, and Vot-ER.
These days, I'm thinking about potential civic futures, most especially the promise and potential of more local politics, more fragmented social media communities, and smaller-scale human connections. I'm writing those thoughts down at Civic Futures as I work out where they might take me.
When I'm not being civic AF, I'm probably trying to befriend your dog. Skiing, bouldering, and hiking adventures all get me outside and away from screens. I love a good short story: recent favorites include What It Means When a Man Falls from the Sky, The Office of Historical Corrections, and Exhalation. I cook as often as a tiny spatula-obsessed sous chef allows. But really, can I pet your dog?
If you'd like to collaborate or keep in touch, you can still find me (for now) at @katyetc.