Professor Desmond Upton Patton



Associate Professor of Social Work at Columbia University


Desmond Upton Patton is a Public Interest Technologist who is a pioneer in the use of social media and artificial intelligence in the study of contextually driven AI, empathy, and violence. Dr. Patton is the founding Director of the SAFElab and Associate Professor of Social Work, Sociology and Data Science at Columbia University.

He is the recipient of the 2018 Deborah K. Padgett Early Career Achievement Award from the Society for Social Work Research (SSWR) and 2017-2018 Fellow at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society. He is a Presidential Leadership Scholar and Technology and Human Rights Fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights at Harvard Kennedy School. His worked is featured in the A&E show: Secret Life of a Gang Girl: The Untold Story.