Microsoft Research will open a lab in New York City.

The research community is highly connected, so we’re well aware of and have long admired the incredible work being done by the researchers we are welcoming to Microsoft Research, including thought leaders such as Duncan Watts, David Pennock, and John Langford. But as we in Microsoft Research connected with them to begin a meaningful dialogue about their plans and aspirations, we began to fully appreciate not only their individual talents and expertise, but also their uncanny ability to work together with unrivaled energy and passion. The conversations left me and other Microsoft Research researchers inspired to expand our East Coast presence. I’m thrilled to share that David Pennock will take the reins as MSR-NYC’s assistant managing director, overseeing the day-to-day operations at the NYC facility.

I’m excited as well for the collaboration opportunities between the research interests of this phenomenally talented team in NYC and the work being done by my team in the New England lab around social media, empirical economics, and machine learning. The approaches of the two labs to social science and economics research are distinct but highly complementary, and, indeed, we expect that the whole will be much greater than the sum of its parts.

I spent a week last fall at MSR Cambridge and it was one of the most pleasant and productive weeks I have had in a long time.  If they can recreate the same environment in Manhattan it would be an incredibly attractive place for visitors and full-time scholars.  Here’s more.