Research Topic

Algorithms and Automation

Automated tools structure much of what we do online: what we see on social media feeds, what is surfaced on search engines, how we work, and how we access social services. Algorithms hold out the seductive possibility of decision-making unmarred by human error, but they rely on data sets that replicate human biases.

Automated systems can also be manipulated to spread false narratives, accelerating disinformation campaigns and undermining trust. This research topic discusses the harms that can accrue through the use and abuse of automation, as well as the ways in which automated interventions can help reduce viral false narratives.  

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  • Harvard Kennedy School, Technology and Social Change Research Project
  • Associate Professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Professor in the School of Journalism and the Department of Sociology (by courtesy), University of Texas at Austin