Lydia Nicholas

Digital Anthropologist and Researcher in Technology Culture

why book lydia?

  • Lydia Nicholas is an anthropologist specialising in the interaction between people and cutting-edge technologies
  • A regular contributor to New Scientist, Lydia communicates complex ideas in health, data, and science fiction, bringing clarity to diverse audiences
  • With over 10 years of live comedy experience, Lydia brings humour, passion, and clarity to her talks, making them both enlightening and entertaining


Lydia is an anthropologist who studies how people and cutting edge technologies work together. Formerly a senior researcher working across the Futures team and Health Lab at Innovation charity Nesta, Lydia Nicholas has worked with scientists to improve their work across disciplines. Lydia has worked with the UK Government researching technology futures and developing the Data Science Research Ethics framework, and with the Science MuseumWellcome TrustBBC and more.

She writes regularly for New Scientist on matters of health and data, and science fiction. Alongside her research work Lydia has been performing live comedy for ten years, including at the Edinburgh fringe.

She is currently pursuing a PhD in Human Computer Interaction with UCL and Great Ormond Street Hospital. Recently she has spoken for BBC Research & Development, at The Royal Society, at DataFest18, FutureFest, and various other festivals and private events.


Future Trends and Technology – AI

Health Care Technologies and Biomedical Research

Use of Technology in Government

The Futures of Food, Water and Infrastructure

Science Fiction


Lydia Nicholas


“Lydia Nicholas is one of my go-to acts when I need someone reliably hilarious and intelligent. From science improv to panel shows to ten minutes about the future for a conference drinks reception, Lydia always delivers.”

Steve Cross, Clever Make Funny Productions

“You set the tone for the day amazingly – there’s been so much lovely feedback about your presentation.”

Ruth Oliver, Dots Festival 

“Every time I listening to one of Lydia’s talks my assumptions and beliefs about how the world of data and AI are transformed. She seems to contain an unfathomable supply of intriguing anecdotes and case-studies that illuminate future conceptions of the world. Some of these futures may be bleak, others optimistic but they are always told with wit, humour and infectious enthusiasm. More people working in or with tech need to hear what she has to say.”

Josh Ryan-Saha, Skills Manager Datalab Scotland