Isabel Pedersen

Dr. Isabel Pedersen is the founding Director of the Digital Life Institute, an international research network of multidisciplinary scholars studying the social implications of emergent digital technologies, where she also leads the AI and Social Implications cluster. She is Professor of Communication Studies at Ontario Tech University and studies the cultural, ethical, and political challenges posed by technological change through design, adoption and adaptation, concentrating on emergent digital devices. Her most recent co-authored book is Augmentation technologies and artificial intelligence in technical and professional communication: Designing ethical futures (Ann Hill Duin and Isabel Pedersen, 2023, Routledge). She is co-author of Writing Futures: Collaborative, Algorithmic, Autonomous (Ann Hill Duin and Isabel Pedersen, 2021, Springer), and co-editor of Embodied Computing: Wearables, Implantables, Embeddables, Ingestibles (Isabel Pedersen and Andrew Iliadis 2020, MIT Press). She is published in academic journals including the Journal on Computing and Cultural Heritage, Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, International Journal of Cultural Studies, and Parol – Quaderni d’arte e di eipistemologia.

Dr. Pedersen has held several distinguished positions and awards. She held the Canada Research Chair in Digital Life, Media, and Culture (September 2012-August 2022). She was inducted into The Royal Society of Canada, College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists (2014 – 2021). She was awarded the Scholarly Research and Creative Activity Award, Faculty of Communication and Design at Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University) in 2010. She has served as Assistant Professor (2004-2009) and Associate Professor (2009-2012) in the School of Professional Communication, Faculty of Communication and Design, Toronto Metropolitan University.


Ph.D. in English, Language and Literature, University of Waterloo
M.A. in English, Language and Professional Writing, University of Waterloo
B.A. in English, Trinity College, University of Toronto


Leadership Positions
Ontario Tech University, Faculty of Social Science and Humanities
Canada Research Chair in Digital Life, Media, and Culture (2012 – 2022)
Director, Digital Life Institute (2020 – 2023)
Director of Decimal Lab (2012 – 2023)

Faculty Positions
Ontario Tech University, Faculty of Social Science and Humanities
Professor (2020 – 2023)
Associate Professor (2012 – 2020)
School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, Graduate program affiliation in Computer Science, Faculty of Science

Appointed Yeates School of Graduate Studies, Ryerson University, Joint Graduate Program in Communication & Culture, York University and Ryerson University Associate Member (2012-2020)

Speaking Engagements

Dr. Pedersen has given invited international talks and keynotes, including the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Big Thinking on the Hill Lecture Series, introduced by Federal MP Greg Fergus on April 28, 2020. She spoke at World Science Festival in New York, IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society (keynote), Global Affairs Canada AI Symposium, IFA Summit Berlin, Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, the International Wearables Technologies Conference (Munich), The International Council on Education for Teaching (ICET) World Assembly, the Canadian Association of Journalists Annual Conference, The Walrus Talks, TEDx, Spur Festival (Calgary and Toronto), Subtle Technologies, and Mesh Toronto.


Isabel Pedersen, I., Networked bodies, AI, and our future digital lives, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Big Thinking Lecture Series, 2020.

Pedersen, I., & Iliadis, A. (Eds.) Embodied computing: Wearables, implantables, embeddables, ingestibles. Cambridge: MIT Press. April, 2020.

Pedersen, I. (2013). Ready to wear: A rhetoric of wearable computers and reality-shifting media. Anderson, S.C: Parlor Press.