The Envisioning the Future of Computing Prize is an essay contest that invites MIT students to share their ideas, aspirations, and vision for what they think a future propelled by advancements in computing holds.
The Institute-wide competition, which launched in 2023, attracted 67 submissions this year from undergraduate and graduate students across various majors, including nuclear science and engineering, media arts and sciences, electrical engineering and computer science, mathematics, chemical engineering, and others. All entries were eligible to win a number of cash prizes.
The contest implemented a two-stage evaluation process wherein all essays were first reviewed anonymously by a committee of faculty members from the Schwarzman College of Computing and School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences. Three finalists were then invited to give 20-minute presentations on their entries at a live awards ceremony on April 23, followed by a Q&A with the judging panel and audience members for the second round.
The grand prize of $10,000 was awarded to Christopher Maynard SM ’24, a recent graduate of the Technology and Policy Program in the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society. Maynard won for “Bioglossia,” a work of speculative fiction about a breakthrough human-to-animal translation technology.
The two runners up, awarded $5,000 each, were Siddu Pachipala, an undergraduate majoring in economics and political science, for his essay on generative AI in politics, and Sadie Zacharek, a PhD candidate in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, for her conception of a predictive model for mental health precision medicine. In addition, 12 honorable mentions were recognized with each receiving a cash prize of $1,000.
Meet the winners, watch their presentations, and read their essays below.

Grand Prize Winner


Christopher Maynard SM ’24
Technology and Policy Program
Institute for Data, Systems, and Society


Runner Ups

Generative AI and Democracy: Rebooting Trust, Bit by Bit

Siddhu Pachipala
Economics, Political Science


PsyPredict: A Predictive Model for Mental Health Precision Medicine

Sadie Zacharek
Brain and Cognitive Sciences


Honorable Mentions

Looking for more? Read essays from the 2023 competition and meet last year’s winners.

The Envisioning the Future of Computing Prize competition is co-sponsored by the Social and Ethical Responsibilities of Computing (SERC), a cross-cutting initiative within the MIT Schwarzman College of Computing, and the MIT School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences.
Thank you to MAC3 Impact Philanthropies for their generous support of the prize this year.