Center for Values in Medicine, Science and Technology Lecture Series - Safiya Umoja Noble

Wednesday, April 17, 2019, 7:30 p.m.
Venue: JO 2.604
Admission: Free
Season: 2017-18


Center for Values in Medicine, Science and Technology Lecture Series: The Promise and the Peril of Artificial Intelligence

About the Lecture:

Critical information scholars continue to demonstrate how technology and its narratives are shaped by and infused with values and not the result of the actions of impartial, disembodied, unpositioned agents. Technology consists of a set of social practices, situated within the dynamics of race, gender, class, and politics. Safiya Noble’s talk, based on her book, Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism, addresses the issues of internet search and how language and meaning are derived in ways that pose particular harms to various publics who are increasingly reliant upon commercial technologies.

About the Author:

In 2019, Dr. Safiya Umoja Noble will join the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford as a Senior Research Fellow/Associate Professor. She is currently visiting at the University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School of Communication, and is on the faculty of the Department of Information Studies in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, and the Department of African American Studies at UCLA. Previously, she was in Media and Cinema Studies and the Institute for Communications Research at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

She is the author of a best-selling book on racist and sexist algorithmic bias in commercial search engines, entitled Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism (NYU Press) and was the recipient of a Hellman Fellowship and the UCLA Early Career Award. She is regularly quoted for her expertise by national and international press on issues of algorithmic discrimination and technology bias, including The Guardian, the BBC, CNN International, USA Today, Wired, Time, and the New York Times, to name a few.

Safiya’s academic research focuses on the design of digital media platforms on the internet and their impact on society. Her work is both sociological and interdisciplinary, marking the ways that digital media impacts and intersects with issues of race, gender, culture, and technology.

Dr. Noble is the co-editor of two edited volumes: The Intersectional Internet: Race, Sex, Culture and Class Online and Emotions, Technology & Design. She currently serves as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Critical Library and Information Studies, and is the co-editor of the Commentary & Criticism section of the Journal of Feminist Media Studies. She is a member of several academic journal and advisory boards, including Taboo: The Journal of Culture and Education. She holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Library & Information Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a B.A. in Sociology from California State University, Fresno where she was recently awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award for 2018.


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