Richa Desai

Fulbright/University of Leeds Award

Richa Desai is from Metuchen, New Jersey. She graduated with a BS in Computational Biology and a BA in Anthropology from the University of Pittsburgh in April 2024. 
As an undergraduate, Richa wrote a thesis studying British colonial public health data production in India, examining the conceptual foundations of evidence-based public health science and policy. Richa is also passionate about air quality in Pittsburgh and examined citizen science data practices through an internship with the nonprofit GASP. On campus, she was also Vice President of the Anthropology Club at Pitt. 

Richa is excited to begin her MA by Research in History at the University of Leeds. She intends to study how international actors produced and used data for the shared purpose of eradicating smallpox. Overall, she hopes to study the histories and politics of scientific development by thoughtfully challenging assumptions around objectivity, data, and computing. After returning to the US, she will pursue a Ph.D. in the History and Sociology of Science. Outside the classroom, Richa hopes to consider the similarities of post-industrial landscapes and environments between Yorkshire and Southwestern Pennsylvania. She looks forward to enjoying museums, live music, and bookshops in the UK.