Margaret Levenstein and Edgar Pieterse Join SSRC Board of Directors

The Social Science Research Council is proud to welcome two leaders in data science and urban studies as members of its Board of Directors: Dr. Margaret Levenstein, who directs the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research at the University of Michigan, and Dr. Edgar Pieterse, a founding director of the African Centre for Cities at the University of Cape Town. Levenstein and Pieterse began their three-year terms on the SSRC Board in March and January 2021, respectively.

Margaret LevensteinMargaret Levenstein is director of the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research, research professor at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research and the School of Information, and adjunct professor of business economics and policy at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business. She is co-director of the Michigan Federal Statistical Research Data Center, co-chair of the FSRDC Executive Committee, and associate chair of the American Economic Association’s Committee on the Status of Women in the Economics Profession. She serves on the advisory boards of Computational Antitrust, OpenDP, Coordinated Access for Data, Researchers and Environments (CADRE), the Network on Life Course Health Dynamics and Disparities in 21st Century America, Databrary, and the Qualitative Data Repository. She received her PhD in economics from Yale University and BA in economics from Barnard College, Columbia University. She is the author of Accounting for Growth: Information Systems and the Creation of the Large Corporation, as well as numerous historical and contemporary studies of competition and of innovation. Her research also examines and produces novel, non-designed data for social and economic measurement.

Edgar PieterseProfessor Edgar Pieterse is founding director of the African Centre for Cities at the University of Cape Town and holds the South African Research Chair in Urban Policy. His research and teaching explore urban development politics, everyday culture, publics, radical social economies, responsive design, and adaptive governance systems. He is consulting editor for Cityscapes—an international occasional magazine/platform on urbanism in the global South—and has published ten books dealing with a wide-ranging set of topics related to contemporary urbanism and place-making. Pieterse serves on various editorial boards of academic journals and research advisory boards of leading knowledge centers, and, in the African context, has been active in the growth of two key pan-African knowledge networks: the Association of African Planning Schools and the African Urban Research Initiative; both are anchored in the African Centre for Cities. His current research is focused on a major exhibition—CompleXities—dealing with uncertain urban futures that will be mounted in 2022, as well as exploratory work on radical social enterprises that seeks to define alternative modalities of service delivery in African cities. Lastly, Pieterse is working on an institutional framework to promote city-level innovation ecosystems in Africa that will promote the localization of sustainable infrastructure in low-income contexts.