Projects

This page lists a sample of current work and older favorites.

HIGHLIGHT:
Our work on “algorithm auditing” (a phrase coined by our lab) was recommended by the Obama White House as one of five research strategies essential to the future of tech in the United States. Our research was cited in Sandvig v. Barr, a case called “a huge win” for the freedom of information and a “major victory for civil liberties and civil rights enforcement.” Our studies appeared in multiple 2020 amicus briefs before the U.S. Supreme Court.

CURRENT

Algorithm Auditing (very short overview [PDF], white paper [PDF], web site) — Investigating illegal discrimination in digital media curation and ranking from the outside.

Race, Policing, and Detroit’s Project Green Light (web site) — Meet one of the most controversial surveillance systems in the US, offering automated face recognition in private places with real-time monitoring by police.

Sensing Algorithms (grant announcement) — A collaboratory between art, music, architecture, cultural studies, and computer science to make hidden algorithms tangible or visible.

Corrupt Personalization — A forthcoming book project.

FAVORITES

Awakenings of the Filtered (demo [PDF], study #1 [PDF], study #2 [PDF]) — To help users audit their own Facebook curation algorithm we developed a system that lets them explore the posts that Facebook filters out.

The RED Project (journal article [PDF], screenshots [PDF]) — Rendering Electromagnetic Distributions (RED) was an interactive system that used a visual metaphor of redlining to illustrate inequality in access to technology.

Digital Studies Meet Platform Studies (research article [PDF]) — Two theoretical worldviews characterize objects of study in the digital media landscape like Google and Facebook: infrastructure studies and platform studies. Can we cross-articulate them? Is one theory really a subset of the other?

Digital Research Confidential (first chapter [PDF], book page at MIT Press) — What if we asked social and computational researchers to describe their research methods by describing what really happened? A book about advancing research methods for studying online behavior.

Digital Futures (project web site) — An event series dedicated to understanding the future of the Internet and digital media.

For more, try: Christian Sandvig’s publications page.