Technology Management's Jessica Santana Awarded Prestigious Hellman Fellowship

Monday, July 25, 2022

Technology Management assistant professor Jessica Santana has been awarded the prestigious Hellman Fellowship from the Society of Hellman Fellows. Made possible by a $125M gift from the Hellman Fellows Fund, this endowed program provides research funding to promising assistant professors who show capacity for great distinction in their chosen field. Many Hellman Fellows go on to become department chairs, award-winning researchers, and MacArthur “genius” grant recipients. Fellowships can range from $10,000 to $65,000. Santana will use funding to develop a data repository for the computational study of entrepreneurship.

“Historically, the study of entrepreneurship has relied on a limited set of data that is biased toward success cases,” said Santana. “Moreover, existing official datasets suffer from a significant time lag between reports. In order to truly understand the nature of entrepreneurship and guide entrepreneurs in successful strategy, we need to expand analysis to include as full a representation of the process as possible. The proposed project will allow me to take the first step in building a Data Repository for the Computational Study of Entrepreneurship.”

The Data Repository for the Computational Study of Entrepreneurship project seeks to amend current informational gaps by providing a central and open repository for entrepreneurial data, with a special focus on entrepreneurial failure data. Santana envisions offering a dashboard for quick access to macro-level stats and training for researchers to employ computational tools such as R to analyze the data in the repository. This training will focus on network and text analysis, in particular. In addition to the open data repository, dashboard, and computational tools, this project will seek to sustain an ongoing stream of publicly available reports, publications, and conference activities.

Santana joined the UC Santa Barbara Technology Management faculty in 2019 after graduating with a PhD in sociology from Stanford University, where she also completed a master's degrees in sociology. She also possesses a Master of Information Management and Systems degree from UC Berkeley. She develops computational techniques to understand how entrepreneurs use social networks to learn and recover from failure.

Jessica Santana, an associate professor of technology management at UC Santa Barbara

Jessica Santana, technology management assistant professor