Christine Peterson writes, lectures, and briefs the media on coming powerful technologies, especially nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, and longevity. She is Cofounder and Past President of Foresight Institute, the leading nanotech public interest group. Foresight educates the public, technical community, and policymakers on coming powerful technologies and how to guide their long-term impact.
She serves on the Advisory Board of the Machine Intelligence Research Institute, and has served on California's Blue Ribbon Task Force on Nanotechnology and the Editorial Advisory Board of NASA's Nanotech Briefs.
She has often directed Foresight Conferences on Molecular Nanotechnology, organized Foresight Institute Feynman Prizes, and chaired Foresight Vision Weekends.
She lectures on technology topics to a wide variety of audiences, focusing on making complex fields understandable.
Her work is motivated by a desire to help Earth's environment and traditional human communities avoid harm and instead benefit from expected dramatic advances in technology. This goal of spreading benefits led to an interest in new varieties of intellectual property including open source software, a term she is credited with originating.
Wearing her for-profit hat, she chairs the Personalized Life Extension Conference series. In 1991 she coauthored Unbounding the Future: the Nanotechnology Revolution (Morrow, full text online), which sketches nanotechnology's potential environmental and medical benefits as well as possible abuses. An interest in group process led to coauthoring Leaping the Abyss: Putting Group Genius to Work (knOwhere Press, 1997, full text online) with Gayle Pergamit.
Peterson holds a bachelor's degree in chemistry from MIT.