Danielle Allen

Danielle Allen

James Bryant Conant University Professor
Director, Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics (on leave from July 1, 2021)
Danielle Allen

Danielle Allen, James Bryant Conant University Professor at Harvard University, and Director of Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, is a political theorist who has published broadly in democratic theory, political sociology, and the history of political thought. Allen will be on leave for the 2021-2022 academic year, begining July 1, 2021. 

Widely known for her work on justice and citizenship in both ancient Athens and modern America, Allen is the author of The World of Prometheus: The Politics of Punishing in Democratic Athens (2000), Talking to Strangers: Anxieties of Citizenship since Brown vs. the Board of Education (2004), Why Plato Wrote (2010), Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality (2014), Education and Equality (2016), and Cuz: The Life and Times of Michael A. (2017). She is the co-editor of the award-winning Education, Justice, and Democracy (2013, with Rob Reich) and From Voice to Influence: Understanding Citizenship in the Digital Age (2015, with Jennifer Light). She is a former Chair of the Mellon Foundation Board, past Chair of the Pulitzer Prize Board, and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society.

She has chaired numerous commission processes and is a lead author on influential policy roadmaps, including Pursuing Excellence on a Foundation of Inclusion; Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience; Pandemic Resilience: Getting it Done; Our Common Purpose: Reinventing American Democracy for the 21st Century; and Educating for American Democracy: Excellence in History and Civics for All Learners K-12.  She was for many years a contributing columnist for the Washington Post, and writes for the Atlantic.

Allen is the founding director for the Democratic Knowledge Project Design Studio, which emerged from the Democratic Knowledge Project, a distributed research and action lab at Harvard University.  Allen's lab, the Democratic Knowledge Project, worked to identify, strengthen, and disseminate the bodies of knowledge, skills, and capacities that democratic citizens need in order to succeed at operating their democracy.  The Design Studio now supports the Democratic Knowledge Project K-12 civic education work, for which Allen is a faculty advisor.



For any general questions about Danielle's gubernatorial campaign, please direct them to info@allenforma.com. Please direct any media inquiries to allen@allenforma.com

Any questions about scholarly and non-political speaking engagements outside of Massachusetts should be directed to my agent, Hannah Scott at hannah@lyceumagency.com.

To all current and former students, please direct your query to Danielle through Susan Orr at susanorr@fas.harvard.edu.

Democratic Knowledge Project or Educating for American Democracy: Katie Giles, cgiles@fas.harvard.edu 

National Ethics Project inquiries: Jess Miner, jminer@fas.harvard.edu

Our Common Purpose inquiries: Katherine Gagen, kgagen@amacad.org

COVID Rapid Response Research: Stefanie Friedhoff, stefanie_friedhoff@brown.edu