Race, Technology and Civil Society: Foundations + Intersections
October 9th, 2020 - 9:30 am to 11:00 am
How is racial bias coded into technological systems? Can technology advance racial justice? How can scholars and advocates collaborate at the intersection of race and technology? Join us for a cross-discipline, cross-sector discussion with leading scholars and advocates tackling these pressing issues.
- Ruha Benjamin - Associate Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University
- Rediet Abebe - Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows
- Matthew Cagle - Technology and Civil Liberties Attorney at the ACLU of Northern California
- Michele Elam - William Robertson Coe Professor of Humanities in the English Department at Stanford University
Ruha Benjamin is Associate Professor of African American Studies at Princeton University, where she studies the social dimensions of science, technology, and medicine. She is also the founder of the IDA B. WELLS Just Data Lab and the author of two books, People’s Science (Stanford) and Race After Technology (Polity), and editor of Captivating Technology (Duke). She writes, teaches, and speaks widely about the relationship between knowledge and power, race and citizenship, health and justice.
Rediet Abebe is a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows and an incoming Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of California, Berkeley. She completed her Ph.D. in Computer Science at Cornell University. Her research broadly falls in the fields of algorithms and AI, with a focus on equity and justice concerns. Her work has provided new mathematical and computational frameworks for problems related to poverty and inequality. Specifically, she designs and analyzes algorithmic, optimization, and network-based techniques to improve access to opportunity for historically under-served and disadvantaged communities. She also work on human-centered approaches to mechanism design and co-founded and co-organizes Mechanism Design for Social Good (MD4SG), an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional research initiative.
Matthew Cagle is a Technology and Civil Liberties Attorney at the ACLU of Northern California, where he works on digital rights issues, including privacy, surveillance, and free speech. Matt focuses on ensuring modern digital systems – be they private platforms or public projects – are publicly debated and implemented with equality and justice in mind. In his role at the ACLU, Matt works with communities and policymakers to end discriminatory and secretive police surveillance. Matt has helped lead efforts to pass surveillance legislation across the Bay Area and served on the groundbreaking Oakland committee that restricted a vast surveillance complex and created a first-of-its-kind Privacy Advisory Commission.
Michele Elam is the William Robertson Coe Professor of Humanities in the English Department at Stanford University, a Faculty Associate Director of the Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence and a Race & Technology Affiliate at the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. Elam’s research in interdisciplinary humanities connects literature and the social sciences in order to examine changing cultural interpretations of gender and race. More recently, her scholarship examines intersections of race, technology and the arts. “Making Race in the Age of AI,” her most recent book project, considers how the humanities and arts function as key crucibles through which to frame and address urgent social questions about equity in emergent technologies.
Hosted by the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. Co-sponsored by Digital Civil Society Lab, Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence (HAI), and Program in African & African American Studies