ISSR/CSSI Seminar | "Using the Crowd" Mixer

Thursday, October 4, 2018 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm
420 Thompson Hall | University of Massachusetts Amherst

Crowdsourcing” refers to collecting and aggregating many judgments and ratings from a large group of people, often accessed through online labor marketplaces such as Amazon's Mechanical Turk, or volunteer settings such as citizen science or web forums.  In the last 10 years, it's become a crucial element of artificial intelligence, to collect data to train machine learning algorithms, while at the same time, these online services are often used to recruit subjects for behavioral experiments across many areas of social science, and their dynamics connect to long-standing areas of social inquiry.  Crowdsourcing and "Using the Crowd" poses many interesting questions as both a social scientific and computational phenomenon:

  • How do online subjects compare to traditional on-campus subjects? 
  • What are the methodological challenges? How does a researcher ensure quality, attention, and motivation?
  • What are the ethical implications of utilizing such populations for research?
  • How does crowdsourcing fit into the future of labor, gig economies, and transnational labor? 
  • Can we apply or test theories or critical observations of group dynamics in these settings?
  • How should one aggregate judgments from the crowd?  What models are appropriate to apply (for example, from psychometrics or otherwise)?

This by-application only Mixer event on ‘Using the Crowd’ aims to catalyze dialogue and cooperation across many fields and disciplines at UMass Amherst, to discuss the opportunities and challenges of using the crowd. 

The format consists of very short (2-minute) presentations of research, followed by free-flowing poster sessions and active dialogue between participants. Lunch will be provided. Assistance in preparing and printing simple posters will be provided, if needed. Interested participants should RSVP by filling out this quick survey, briefly outlining how their research relates to the theme of the event. 

Should you have any questions please contact Kevin Young, Associate Director of ISSR and/or Ina Ganguli, Associate Director of CSSI.