Research Focus 3: Data Guarantees

Cognative Sigmoid

Our third research topic, Data Guarantees: Analysis of Data with Assurances of Quality, Transparency, Fairness , Privacy and Trust commenced in September 2021. As part of our programming in connection with this focus, Tufts T-Tripods Institute will host a series of  presentations and conversations on responsible data science in Fall 2021. In addition on Monday, November 8, 2021 and Tuesday, November 9, 2021, we will host a 2-day virtual workshop titled Understanding Misinformation and Disinformation: An Interdisciplinary Approach. 


Fall 2022 Programming:

Special focus on FAIR metadata commences: 

Special joint T-Tripods/DISC Colloquium by Dr. Line Pouchard on December 9 at 11am.

Details are here. 


Fall 2021 Programming: 

Making Real-World Data Science Responsible Data Science

This fall semester, Tufts T-TRIPODS Institute will host a series of presentations and conversations on responsible data science. Specifically, we are inviting speakers with expertise that can answer the question: how can society ensure that data science has a positive impact?

Data science, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and statistical modeling are generating rampant excitement. Practitioners are eager to adopt these disciplines to create decision-making computer programs that impact peoples' lives. Systems are being designed to identify and track individuals in public places, recommend loan approvals, or determine citizens' likelihood of committing crimes. With these systems having such strong impacts, various parts of society are compelled to adapt to ensure these systems are operating responsibly.

Some legislation has already been introduced and implemented to address these concerns. Non-government organizations have produced guidance for policymakers. And scientists are developing safer data science tools that can measure and mitigate inequity in their decisions.  But open questions remain. How can we improve the interaction between scientists, industry, non-government organizations, and governments

  • to produce policies informed by deep understanding of the technology
  • to incentivize or compel industry to use these tools in ethical ways; or
  • to energize scientists and researchers to develop new technologies that are safer and compatible with society's needs?

We are in the process of inviting the speakers to these sessions, and we are forming the schedule around the speakers' availability. The schedule will be announced in the near future.

If you have any questions or comments about this workshop, contact Bert Huang (, co-principal investigator for T-TRIPODS.

Confirmed Speakers:

Kade Crockford, ACLU Directory of Technology for Liberty Program

Ben Ewen-Campen, Somerville City Councilor

3pm, Oct. 7, 2021 (Joint with Tufts CS Colloquium) More details

Rumman Chowdhury, Director of Twitter's Machine Learning Ethics, Transparency, and Accountability (META). Date & time TBA.

Julia Stoyanovich, Associate Professor, NYU Computer Science and Engineering

3pm, Nov. 18, 2021 (Joint with Tufts CS Colloquium)

Desmond Patton, Associate Professor, Columbia University School of Social Work

2:30pm, Nov. 19, 2021

2-Day Workshop on Understanding Misinformation and Disinformation

On Monday November 8 and Tuesday November 9, 2021  in the afternoon, we will have a series of talks about understanding misinformation and disinformation, organized by Nicholas Rabb, JP de Ruiter, L. Cowen, and Bert Huang. List of confirmed speakers and schedule to follow in early October.

Confirmed speakers: Rachel Moran (University of Washington), Katya Ognyanova (Rutgers University), Victor Pickard (University of Pennsylvania), David G. Rand (MIT), Moira Weigel (Harvard). 

Plus a panel with additional invited guests, and short student talks. 

Register in advance for this meeting: 

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Full schedule: (All times Eastern Time) 

Day 1: November 8

1-2pm Victor Pickard, The Political Economy of Misinformation: Is the Crisis an Opportunity? 

2-3pm Rachel Moran, QAnon and the "Lamestream" Media: How Media Distrust Fuels Misinformation and Conspiracy Theories

3-3:15pm virtual coffee break

3:15-4:15pm Katya Ognyanova, Online Misinformation: Health Outcomes, Political Implications, and Pathways to Social Correction

4:15-5:30pm Panel with: Monday's invited speakers plus Rachel Kuo and Sarah Sobieraj, moderated by Bert Huang

Day 2: November 9 

1-2pm David Rand, Understanding and Reducing Misinformation Online

2-3pm Moira Weigel, Conspiracy Theories, Paranoid Publics, and the Limits of "Disinformation" 

3-3:15pm virtual coffee break 

3:15-5:00pm Shorter student talks: Click here for talk abstracts

  • 3:20-3:40 Nicholas Rabb, Tufts University, Cognitive cascades:  How to model (and potentially counter) the spread of fake news
  • 3:40-4:00 Jennifer Allen, MIT,  Scaling up fact-checking using the wisdom of crowds
  • 4:00-4:20 Cameron Martel, MIT, Does distrust in fact-checkers actually undermine the effect of fact-checks?
  • 4:20-4:40 Andrew Beers & Joseph S. Schafer, University of Washington: The contingency of social media visualization on behavior metrics
  • 4:40-5:00 Sarah Nguyễn, University of Washington, Sending news back home: analyzing information disorder in the Vietnamese diaspora