Meet the ICers

Current Independent Concentrators at Brown

Check out the Independent Concentrations currently being pursued at Brown! The proposals for these ICs will not be available until these students graduate. To see IC proposals written by graduated ICers, visit the CRC IC Database.

Vlad Barbulica '20


Project Design and Development is the human-centered exploration of aesthetics and ergonomics used in creating the next generation of products for society.

Aliosha Bielenberg '20

Critical Thought and Global Social Inquiry has one foot firmly planted in the philosophical tradition of critical theory and the other in rigorous investigations of global society through existing disciplines across the humanities and humanistic social sciences. I use these tools to interrogate questions of postcolonialsm, nationalism, and global justice with an eye to imaginative, insightful, and different modes of thought.

Devyn Collado-Nicol '20

Environment and Enterprise engages students on the relationships between people, cultures, capitalism, and environmental sustainability. The goal of the concentration is to push students to traverse the current contradictory and rather paradoxical relationship of corporations, consumerism, and sustainability; ultimately striving to find a symbiotic relationship between them. In essence, students will engage in interdisciplinary learning, dissecting and integrating two areas that have been at odds since the beginning of the industrial revolution.

Talia Curhan '20

Nutrition, Psychology & Human Development explores the intersection between psychology, public health, and education to understand how children's social, cognitive, and nutritional health are shaped by school and society as they grow and develop.

Mattis Dalton '20


Cognitive Neuroscience of Music is the study of the mechanisms that underlie music perception, composition, cognition, reading and performing. Using a scientific framework, I will concern myself with exploring topics from language and music, to the neural correlates of musical emotion, to music memory and therapy.

Will Friend '20


Strategy, Economics and Peace uses the methods, tools and worldviews of various disciplines to build a holistic view of conflict at different scales and contexts. The concentration explores the causes and consequences of conflicts, and integrates insights from various social science disciplines such as economics, psychology, and anthropology in order to achieve a systemic understanding of what factors facilitate successful or unsuccessful conflict resolution.

Ann Garth '20


Systems Change and Environmental Policy uses sociological and psychological theories to analyze US environmental policymaking by exploring how dynamic interactions between stakeholders impact environmental policy.

Christian Hanway '20


Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) is an interdisciplinary study of society and governance that explores the purpose and development of government, the effects of markets, and what it means to live a good life.

Oren Karp '20

This concentration studies Storytelling as a mode of teaching and learning, but also as a way of knowing and understanding experiences of being human. It considers oral and written storytelling as broad cultural phenomena and therefore as forms that can mediate cross-cultural communication. 

Shannon Kingsley '20

Ethnobotany is the study of the relationship between plants and people through biological, historical, and anthropological perspectives. This concentration will explore the medicinal, religious, and economic uses of plants and conceptions of nature by people from various cultures and during various periods of history, while providing experience in both scientific and anthropological areas of research.

Lori Kohen '20


Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) is the interdisciplinary study of these three fields that harmonizes its individual components to enhance a broader sense of political understanding through their combination. By combining political thought, economic analysis and rigorous philosophical inquiry, PPE provides a united comprehensive training where the sum becomes greater than its individual parts. PPE is a tool in appreciating the multifacetedness of our world and producing progressive solutions to contemporary societal challenges.

Rainier Kortenhorst '20


Politics, Philosophy, and Economics is the combined study of these three subject areas in order to create analysis that transcends any of the individual parts. PPE builds on the fundamental notion that core questions in the areas of politics, philosophy and economics cannot be comprehensively understood nor answered without drawing on the other two. Thus, PPE highlights how these fields interact and inform each other in order to produce a holistic understanding of societal issues. Through the combination of investigative methods from all three subjects, PPE is crucial to devising comprehensive solutions to the contemporary challenges to liberalism.

Zachary Krause '20


A concentration in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics synthesizes the knowledge of moral principles and logic; an understanding of liberalism, libertarianism, and socialism; as well as the study of market structures to provide a holistic prospective. This holistic prospective will be utilized to analyze the relationships between individuals and institutions, primarily in the federal governments of the United States. 

Anneliese Mair '20

Healing Narratives examines the relationship between written forms of narrative and the structuring and interpretive work of healing. Building upon theoretical frameworks of psychoanalysis and psychopathology, literary structuralist theory, and trauma studies, the concentration explores the literary and nonfiction structures through which individuals recount, connect, interpret, and validate experiences of illness and trauma.

Audrey McDermott '20


Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) is the study of the interrelated forces of political systems, economic systems, and the philosophical movements that underlie them. PPE enables one to examine the ways in which these systems interact, as political theories impact political decisions which then interact with economic markets. An understanding of the relationships between these different systems can then be applied to understand the experiences disadvantaged groups such as women, refugees and minorities in political and economic systems.

Julia Ostrowski '20


Computational Neuroscience is an interdisciplinary field that combines the studies of neuroscience, computer science, and applied mathematics. Through complex computer modeling and applied data analysis, computational neuroscience promises to lead the scientific community in our ability to create better models of neuronal functioning, as well as in progressing our rapidly developing understanding of the brain.

William Patterson '20

Translational Epidemiology combines two reciprocal fields of inquiry in health and disease: population health and bioinformatics. Through quantitative investigation of the biological and socio-behavioral components of disease, this concentration aims to better understand how individual level factors impact the health of communities.

Diana Perkins '20


Industrial Design is the study of the practice of finding and creating intuitive solutions to real world problems while keeping in mind the needs and behaviors of the people the final product is meant to help.

Sophia Petros '20


Global Politics and Art is a study of the relationship between art and politics from a global, comparative perspective.

Michael Power '20


Philosophy, Politics and Economics cultivates an interdisciplinary and holistic approach to understanding and tackling some of the most important global questions of our time. Grounded in the classics but continually drawing on contemporary findings and insights, PPE's focus on the interplay between and interconnected nature of each of its component fields develops a rounded analytical methodology which I've turned toward the international stage, particularly development.

Chahat Rana '20

The goal of Computational Neuroscience is to understand and create systems and cognitive models through computer science that characterize information processing capabilities of the nervous system. Understanding how the brain works is a large scientific challenge today, and computational neuroscience strives to do that through the application of computational techniques that can be learnt through the following curriculum. 

Lauren Raynor '20


The concentration in Regenerative Medicine and Bioethics emphasizes an interdisciplinary study of the science that is Regenerative Medicine and the need to focus on ethical considerations for such advancements and the progression of scientific study today. This concentration aims to answer the question, “What is the burgeoning field of Regenerative Medicine and how are ethical dilemmas necessarily intertwined?”.

Kate Reed '20

Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship is the study of the theory and practice of creating social impact through interventions in their use of design techniques, using iterative and hands-on approaches, with a focus on an ethical design process in the context of social inequality and capitalism. 

Connor Riley '20


Political Science, Philosophy, and Economics attempts to understand how the prominent features of each field combine to analyze the complex social, political, and economic realities of both the historical and modern world. More specifically, I use this interdisciplinary approach to research the potential rise of the nation-state and the return of great-power conflict.

Natalie Rshaidat '20

Computational Cognitive Neuroscience (CCN) is a new interdisciplinary field that is at the intersection between computational neuroscience, cognitive science, and machine learning. By using computational models and applied data analysis of current behavioral and neuroscientific data, CCN aims to incorporate the processes behind the complex cognitive functions of the brain into machines.

Sara Runkel '20



Environmental Physics will apply the theories of physics to environmental issues and orient the science within a political context by incorporating environmental science, policy and ethics courses into a framework of physics. By using physics as the foundation and utilizing the supporting coursework to apply it to environmental issues, I will learn not only the physics of climate change but how climate research can be ethically conducted and effectively communicated.

Nivedita Sriram '20

Philosophy and the Scientific Method investigates how the study of epistemology, inquiry, logic, and critical thinking can be applied to the scientific method and science research. The concentration aims to engage with the scientific method through science and research related coursework and simultaneously critically evaluate its methodology and the certainty we as a society place on its findings through a philosophical lens.

Daniel Tompkins '20

Human-Centered Design is the study of the intersection of psyhcology and behavior with the practice of artistic or commercial creation, with the goal of improving how humans interact with objects, spaces, and interfaces.

Donia Torabian '20


A concentration in Healing Justice Studies points to a new field that seeks transformative community-based practices and responses to remedying the various pain, violence, silencing, and trauma that often results from imperialism as well as the systems of marginalization which emerge from it. This work will be done through three main courses of study: Imperialism as Trauma, Healing Practices, and From Intergenerational Trauma to Intergenerational Resilience.

Sophia Volpe '20


A highly interdisciplinary field, Trauma Studies moves beyond the typical conception of trauma as a psychological phenomenon to analyze the cultural factors which influence the experience of trauma, the response to trauma, the intergenerational transmission of trauma, and the public memorialization of trauma.

Alex Hanesworth '20.5

Sound Documentary is a genre-crossing exploration of sound and its applications in documentary storytelling. It looks at what's possible through sound (particularly the recorded voices of humans) and what good, ethical documentary practice might look like.

Katya Scocimara '20.5

Human-Centered Design is a process for problem solving that emphasizes a deep understanding of human behavior, culture, and context to generate solutions to user needs.

Jasmine Bacchus '21

Politics, Philosophy, Economics (PPE) is an interdisciplinary approach to solving societal problems by intersecting ideas concerning politics, philosophy, and economics. This concentration uses analytical frameworks to understand how policies are made within the state and how they shape decision making.

Bella Cavicchi '21

Literacy and the Performing Arts is an investigation of theatre- and meaning-making. This concentration not only examines literacy in its varied forms and how theatre supports and enhances literacy instruction but also explores the ways we learn to make meaning of the world around us through written, spoken, and performed text.

Briana Das '21


Digital Experience Design is the study of creating digital interfaces and visual experiences. This concentration builds on a foundation of aesthetics, human behavior, and data-collection to build experiences that are reflective of people’s needs and a given context.

Heidi Erwin '21

Game Design and Development is the study of how games are created and experienced, in light of the cultural and historical significance of the medium. This concentration teaches core technical skills necessary to develop video games while acknowledging and incorporating the ultimately human philosophies and psychologies behind games.

Florin Najera-Uresti '21 

Migration, Borders, and Identity Studies is an interdisciplinary concentration that examines the causes of worldwide patterns of migration and the ways in which identity is shaped by the migrant experience, the notion of borders, and discourse about migrants in the media. 


Emilia Ruzicka '21 

 Data Journalism is the discovery and communication of the stories and knowledge that data hold. "Discovery" includes the acquisition of data as well as the analysis of it, while "communciation" can be in either a visual or written format, though is often a combination of both with the end goal of informing and empowering others.

Ivy Scott '21

International Journalism studies the application of ethnographic research and journalistic writing on specific regions and communities for the purpose of socio-political change. This concentration additionally examines the impact written media can have in a global context—that is, not just how journalism influences the “subject” country or region, but also how globalization has made it possible for media to influence social and political systems across the world, and what the results of that influence (both good and bad) can be.

Benjamin Spiegel '21

Computers and Minds is a holistic study of artificial intelligence that aims to learn from centuries of research on the nature of human intelligence to inform our pursuit of artificial general intelligence. Computers and Minds also explores the societal and ethical implications of AGI and ultimately spans the fields of linguistics, philosophy, psychology, and computer science.

Harman Suri '21 


Computational Neuroscience combines the fields of neuroscience, computer science, and applied mathematics. This involves using computational methods to model processes within the brain, and using biological mechanisms in the brain to create better computational frameworks.

Bashar Zaidat '21 

Computational Neuroscience is a field that lies at the intersection of computer science and neuroscience. Applications of computational skills and models to the field of neuroscience and the brain, in general, will promote deeper understanding of how the mind works. The goal of this concentration is to apply skills from both disciplines and gain a better understanding of both.