Steinhardt Researchers Receive $1.6 Million to Partner with Intel on New Science and Tech Center

NYU Steinhardt Professor Helen Nissenbaum recently received $1.625 million to serve as New York University’s lead researcher in the new Intel Science and Technology Center for Social Computing, an initiative that will bring the social sciences to bear on contemporary computing—from social networks to e-government. Assistant Professor Erica Robles-Anderson, also from NYU Steinhardt’s Department of Media, Culture, and Communication, will collaborate with Nissenbaum on questions pertaining to information technologies as social and cultural phenomena: how social values are embedded in digital media and how technology defines identity, both individually and collectively.

The Center is devoted to studying the “third wave” of social computing: the merging of digital and social realms, human and the machine.

The University of California at Irvine will serve as the hub of the $12.5 million Intel-funded research center and facilitate joint research collectives overseen by lead researchers at four partnering institutions: Cornell University, Indiana University, Georgia Tech, and New York University.

Driving this latest center is the belief that technology, culture, politics, and computing are inextricably intertwined; by studying their amalgam, the initiative will generate new scholarly research, policy interventions, and tech innovations. This is Intel’s first Science and Technology Center to span technology, social sciences, and humanities, and it signals a deliberate effort to foster the social and cultural analysis of digital media, information technologies, and networks that will reshape traditional computing paradigms.