Program on Science, Technology and Society at Harvard

Harvard Kennedy School of Government | Harvard University
Zara Mirmalek

Zara Mirmalek

zara_mirmalek (at)

Zara Mirmalek is a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Program on Science, Technology and Society. Her research project, with Sheila Jasanoff, is a cultural study of telepresence, science and exploration among communities of scientists and engineers using and developing remote presence for environmental knowledge production while navigating themes of access, innovation, and intercultural communication. The project is funded by a National Science Foundation INSPIRE grant and includes interdisciplinary and multi-institutional collaborators.  

Zara’s current research builds on her interests in the cultural aspects of knowledge production, technologies of social order and dis-order, and work cultures in (post)industrial organizations. She has conducted ethnographic studies for, and of, high-tech organizations and work sites including Human-Centered Computing at NASA Ames Research Center, IBM Almaden, and United Airlines. Her research on the cultural production of time on Mars is informed by her work as a member of NASA’s Mars Exploration Rovers mission which involved one year of participant-observation at the NASA/Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

Zara earned her PhD in Communication and Science Studies from University of California San Diego, an MPA in Public Administration and Public Policy from California State University East Bay. She has also completed postgraduate work in the Science Technology and Society Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.