John Dabiri ’01 and Terence Tao *96 join White House science and tech council

John Dabiri and Terence Tao

John Dabiri ’01 and Terence Tao *96 were appointed to the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) by the Biden administration.

The council, which dates back to 1957, is an esteemed panel of scientists and engineers outside government that advises the White House on science, technology and innovation policy.

“The future of America depends on science and technology like never before,” said Eric Lander ’78, PCAST co-chair and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. “Scientific progress depends on people seeing things in new ways, because they bring different lenses, different experiences, different passions, different questions. This PCAST is uniquely prepared because of its extraordinary scientific breadth, wide range of work experiences, and unprecedented diversity.”

Dabiri is the Centennial Professor of Aeronautics and Mechanical Engineering at the California Institute of Technology. A MacArthur Foundation “Genius” fellow, he specializes in biological fluid dynamics of the oceans and high-efficiency wind turbines that have the potential to reduce cost, size and environmental impacts.

Tao is a professor of mathematics and the James and Carol Collins Chair in the College of Letters and Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles. A Fields Medal winner and a MacArthur Foundation “Genius” fellow, Tao’s research in both pure and applied mathematics have contributed to compressive sensing (used in signal processing and cryptography) and number theory.

Other appointees include Andrea Goldsmith, dean of Princeton’s School of Engineering and Applied Science, and Stephen Pacala, Princeton’s Frederick D. Petrie Professor in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and associated faculty in Princeton’s High Meadows Environmental Institute (HMEI). The panel is led by Lander and co-chaired by Nobel laureate and Princeton Engineering alumna Frances Arnold ’79 and M.I.T. astronomer Maria Zuber.

Dabiri photo: Courtesy of Caltech; Tao photo: Reed Hutchinson/UCLA