David T. Hsu is Head of Business Innovation at the Hollywood-based social impact agency Propper Daley and author of “Untethered: A Primer on Social Isolation.” Trained as a political scientist, he leverages expertise in culture change and systems change to advise leaders across philanthropy, business, and entertainment. David previously worked in strategy and communications at NationBuilder, the software company that powers grassroots campaigns. Prior to that, he was visiting lecturer in international political economy at the University of Pennsylvania and supported antitrust investigations at the U.S. Department of Justice. David is an advisor for Encore.org’s Generation to Generation campaign and created the citywide “anti-gala” Shared Plates for L.A. Kitchen. He holds a B.A. from Duke and Ph.D. from Princeton.

Alpenglow on the John Muir Trail (Photo: David Hsu)

Alpenglow on the John Muir Trail (Photo: David Hsu)



Propper Daley (2017-current)
Head of Business Innovation  

L.A. Kitchen (2016-current) 
Board of Directors

NationBuilder (2014-2016)
Director of Enterprise Sales  
Senior Communications Strategist
Community Strategist

University of Pennsylvania (2012-2014) 
Postdoctoral Fellow & Visiting Lecturer

Princeton University (2006-2012) 
Doctoral Candidate & Assistant Instructor

U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust Division (2004-2006) 
Paralegal Specialist

Meridian International Center (2003)  
Foreign Affairs Intern



Ph.D. Politics (2012)
Princeton University

B.A. Political Science (2004)
Duke University
Phi Beta Kappa



Creator & Co-Chair
Shared Plates, the annual citywide "anti-gala" for L.A. Kitchen

Campaign Advisor
Generation to Generation, powered by Encore.org

Vice Chair, Reunions
Association of Princeton Graduate Alumni 

Guest Chef  
Modern Movements Fellowship, organized by GOOD



Panel Organizer. "Taking a Stand: Hard Questions about Purpose in Polarized Times," New York Advertising Week (Fall 2018)   

Keynote. "Constellations: The Art of Connectedness," Starfire Council of Greater Cincinnati (Summer 2018)  

Business Community Keynote. "Profit & Purpose in the Age of Isolation," Starfire Council of Greater Cincinnati (Summer 2018)    

Panelist. "Political Polarization & The Fight Against Ideological Isolation," Princeton University (Spring 2018) 

Podcast Guest. "Belonging," The Feast (Spring 2018)   



Report. "Untethered: A Primer on Social Isolation" (2018) 

  • Featured in TASTE: "David Hsu, an author and social scientist, believes that food is the way to fight back against America’s growing social isolation."

Report. "Letting Go: DIY Strategies to Build Local Campaign Ownership" (2017)   

Landscape analyses. Custom research for brands, NGOs, foundations, and individual philanthropists working to drive social change (2017-present)      

Blog post. "When you publish a petition and no one shows up" (2015), cited by CNN (2016)   

Dissertation. "Against Business as Usual: U.S. Foreign Economic Relations after 9/11" (2012) 



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