How recommendation algorithms rule our (media) worlds and what we can do about them – nagranie webinaru

Recommendation algorithms are all around us – suggesting connections on social networks, videos we should watch, songs to listen to, and much more. This session introduces and explains recommendation algorithms for a non-technical audience. It explains where we encounter recommendation algorithms, how they function, and why they are used so widely. It also explains how they influence our information and media diets, and mediate our whole online (and frequently offline!) experience.

This webinar took place on January 28, 2021 at 4:00-5:30 pm CET as part of “The new media: between science and fiction” series.

You can access the recording directly on YouTube by clicking this link:


Varoon Bashyakarla is a data scientist in Berlin whose work explores how personal data is becoming a political asset around the world. Before moving to Berlin, Varoon worked in Silicon Valley as a data scientist at Wealthfront and Dropbox. Varoon was also a Fellow at the Eric and Wendy Schmidt Data Science for Social Good Fellowship, a Transatlantic Digital Debates Fellow, and most recently an awardee of the McCloy Fellowship from the American Council on Germany. Varoon received his bachelor’s degree in statistics and economics from Yale University.

Becky Kazansky has been researching and supporting efforts to defend privacy, digital security, and data justice since 2009. She has worked with civil society organisations such as the Ford Foundation and Tactical Tech, serves as an independent advisor on human rights & technology issues, and is currently finalising her doctorate at the University of Amsterdam as a joint candidate in political science and media studies. Her doctoral research investigates emerging practices of resistance to contemporary data-driven surveillance, including civil society efforts to counter the injustices of automated systems and AI. She is a research associate with the European Research Council-funded DATACTIVE project on the ‘politics of big data according to civil society’, and has served as a lecturer and adviser on the ethics of cybersecurity and data science at the Informatics Institute. Her research has been published in international peer-reviewed journals such as Big Data & Society, New Media & Society, Internet Policy Review, Fibreculture, and International Studies Perspectives.


Łukasz Król – with a background in technology and political science, Łukasz studies the ways in which we can bridge our technological and social realities. He is a researcher, lecturer and workshop facilitator. Łukasz currently focuses on issues such as algorithmic bias and inequality as well as the wider relationship between humans and technology. See more…

This webinar is part of our celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Fulbright Program (January theme is: Science, Technology, and Public Health).

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