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Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making

  • Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making

    Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making

    Today's leaders are burdened with ever-growing expectations and dilemmas. The Neely Center for Ethical Leadership and Decision Making provides them with tools at the intersection of ethics and technology so they can make wise decisions for their organizations while feeling confident about the future. In so doing, we aim to help solve what we believe to be the most difficult, but most important, challenge of our time: how to align emerging technologies with ethical, human-centered values.


Founded thanks to a generous endowment provided by USC Trustee Jerry Neely and his wife Nancy, the Neely Center’s mission is to guide leaders in making responsible decisions surrounding the development, implementation, and management of emerging technologies. By fostering and promoting cutting-edge research, comprehensive education, and cross-disciplinary dialogue, we strive to ensure that technological advancements contribute to both immediate and enduring societal benefits.

Focus Areas

Our current work focuses on three technology-powered innovations poised to revolutionize business and society: 1) Social media platforms and their effects on individuals and communities around the world; 2) Artificial intelligence and its implications for human coordination and decision making; and 3) Immersive and mixed reality (AR/VR/XR) environments with the potential to enhance or detract from physical reality. In each case, we seek to steer these powerful tools toward their benefits and away from harms.


  • To establish a first-of-its-kind public measure of user experiences with social media, we launched a nationally-representative longitudinal tracking survey assessing both positive and negative experiences across common platforms in the United States. The index will help to educate the public about the benefits and harms across different social media platforms, incentivize tech firms to create positive value for society, and inform scholarly debates about the impact of tech on society, including affective polarization, trust in institutions, and societal well-being.