Principal Researcher in Futures

Jessica Bland


Policy and Research

Join Date

September 2012

What I do

Jessica is a principal researcher in the Policy and Research team.

She explores how Nesta can best support responsible development of disruptive technology. She organises Hot Topics events on cutting edge technologies, from DIY biology to civilian drones.
Jessica also leads Nesta's work on foresight methods - looking at how we think and plan for the future, whether that's to enrich political debates or to encourage long term, sustainable corporate strategy. She published Don't stop thinking about tomorrow: a modest defence of futurology in 2013.  Jessica is a member of the advisory committee for Cambridge University's Centre for Science and Policy's horizon scanning work.
Since joining Nesta, she has held public conversations with Evgeny Morozov, Nate Silver and Stephen Emmott.
She has been a guest speaker at the Future Now weekend, part of Yoko Ono's Meltdown Festival at the Southbank. She also blogs on the Political Science platform on


Jessica was previously Senior Policy Adviser at the Royal Society, the UK's National Academy of Science.
She led their recent work on Science as an open enterprise. A while ago, she spent some time studying Physics and Philosophy, but rarely talks about Feynman or Frege these days.


illustration: billboard being put up showing sound waves
This year we will interact with technology through sound as well as light, influencing everything from how we control our devices to how we investigate crime, says Jessica Bland.
A fleet of agribots
Farming, an industry perpetuated with idyllic rural images, is embarking upon a new revolution – precision agriculture. Leave behind one man and his dog, enter one man and his drone.