Cynthia Selin

  • Senior Sustainability Scientist, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability
  • Assistant Professor, School of Sustainability
  • Assistant Research Professor, Consortium for Science, Policy, and Outcomes

Center for Nanotechnology in Society
Arizona State University
PO Box 875603
Tempe, AZ 85287-5603


Cynthia Selin graduated with a B.S. in American Studies from University of California-Santa Cruz (1996) where she wrote her senior thesis on the promise and peril of nanotechnology. In 2000 she completed a M.A. in Science, Technology and Society from Roskilde University (Denmark) where her research focused on technology assessment, and, more specifically, scenario planning. These interested were pursued at Copenhagen Business Schools' Institute for Management, Politics and Philosophy in her doctoral project, completed 2006. The Ph.D. dissertation, entitled Volatile Visions: Transactions in Anticipatory Knowledge explores three interwoven research areas–foresight methodologies, the sociology of expectations and the emergence of nanotechnology–to understand the development of new technologies and to explore the tools and methods used to grasping their emergence. Dr. Selin has published inScience, Technology and Human Values, Futures, and Time & Society.

Curriculum Vita


scenario methodologies; foresight methodologies; temporality; technological culture; new technologies; societal aspects of nanotechnologies; anticipatory governance; organizational theory; innovation; public deliberation


    Ph.D., Knowledge and Management, Institute for Politics, Philosophy and Management, Copenhagen Business School, 2006

    M.A., Science and Technology Studies, Roskilde University/Maastricht University, 2000

    B.A., American Studies, University of California-Santa Cruz, 1996



Withycombe Keeler, L., A. D. Wiek, C. Selin, D. Lang and V. Schweizer. 2012. How to evaluate and construct plausibility in future scenarios?. A case study of value-based future scenarios of water in Phoenix, Arizona. Invited Presentation at the International Workshop on Ethics, Plausibility and Innovation, May 10-11, 2012, European Union Joint Research Centre, Ispra, Italy.