Sean Taylor

Sean Taylor decided to pursue his doctorate because he wanted the opportunity to conduct groundbreaking research. Now in his fifth year of Stern’s PhD program in Information Systems, he’s learned that “almost everything is more complex than you believe at first, and only after you accept that, can you research with an open mind and really make a contribution.”

Stern’s vibrant research community is one of the features he likes best about the PhD program. “Just about every week, there is a student or professor giving a fascinating seminar and because we’re in New York City, the school is able to attract some amazing visiting speakers from all over the world,” says Sean.

Equally important to Sean is the smaller community of doctoral students, who are always eager to meet to discuss ideas and who have become incredibly supportive friends.

This past summer Sean has been selected, among a handful of doctoral students from across the country, to participate in the Yahoo! Key Scientific Challenges Program, where PhD students are given the opportunity to solve real-world fundamental challenges that Yahoo! research scientists are currently confronting. The challenge he will address at the program is “decision making, social influence, and collective decisions,” and the title of his proposal is “Designing diffusion processes: the role of incentives.”

Sean received his B.S. from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he majored in Information Systems and Finance. After graduating, he worked for two years as a research assistant at the Federal Reserve Board, focusing on macroeconomic forecasting, and then spent a few years as a software engineer for a startup company.

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