• CLTR

CLTR announces first two hires beyond the founding team

Updated: Jan 25

Dr Jess Whittlestone appointed Head of AI Policy, and Gabriella Overödder appointed Operations Manager & Strategy Adviser


CLTR today is proud to announce its first two hires:


Dr Jess Whittlestone joins in March as CLTR’s Head of AI Policy. Jess will lead the development of, and advocacy for, CLTR’s key AI policy recommendations, and ensure that the responsible development of AI is given the attention it deserves in senior UK policy circles.


Jess brings a wealth of expertise in the long-term impacts and governance of AI, and in working with governments to translate academic insights into policy recommendations. She joins us from the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk and the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence, both at the University of Cambridge, where she was a Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Director of the AI: Futures and Responsibility Programme. Jess has published widely on subjects related to AI policy and provided expert advice to a number of government departments, including the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation and Office for AI. Jess holds a PhD in Behavioural Science from the University of Warwick, and a first class degree in Mathematics and Philosophy from Oxford University.


Gabriella Overödder joins with immediate effect as CLTR’s Operations Manager and Strategy Adviser. Gabriella will be responsible day-to-day for managing CLTR’s transition from a two-person founding team to a team of six by the summer of 2022.


Gabriella was previously Executive Director of Effective Altruism Sweden, and a contractor for the Centre for Effective Altruism and 80,000 Hours. Prior to this she worked as a sustainability consultant, focused on strategy and communication. Gabriella has also worked as a research assistant in clinical immunology research, climate change research, and food and water security research. She holds a BA in Earth Sciences from the University of Cambridge.


Jess said:


“I’m thrilled to be joining CLTR, at a time when there’s a real opportunity to shape policy related to extreme risks, and responsible development of AI in particular. I’ve been really impressed by what CLTR has achieved so far, both in terms of turning academic expertise into real policy impact, and in terms of Gus and Sophie’s commitment to building the kind of working environment where people can thrive. I’m excited to get started!”


Gabriella said:


“CLTR has made massive progress in its early days, filling a key gap in such an important area of work. I’m glad to help grow this team of world class people and take even greater steps in reducing extreme risks. Beyond the inspiring mission and impact, it’s such a great group of people to work with every day!”


CLTR’s Chief Executive, Angus Mercer, said:


“I am delighted to welcome Jess and Gabriella to the team. Their academic calibre, policy understanding and leadership experience will be invaluable assets to CLTR. We are a small non-profit with big plans. I have no doubt that Jess and Gabriella will play vital roles in helping us achieve our ambitions to become the pre-eminent UK think tank in the extreme risks space.”


CLTR’s Director, Sophie Dannreuther, said:


“I am really pleased to have Gabriella and Jess join CLTR. Their values, expertise and commitment to building great teams are exactly what we need as we pursue our mission to build the UK’s resilience to extreme risks.”


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