Web Science and Social Computing

The web has become the biggest and most dynamic information repository in the world, presenting an opportunity to develop and improve search and mining techniques for web information, including text, semistructured data, images, sound, hyperlinks, and user behavior information. Our group seeks to advance the state of the art in web science, the interdisciplinary study of the web as a natural object, as well as more traditional areas of computing such as information retrieval and data mining.

The social web, the part of the web that is built around social software serving as an intermediary or as a focus for social relationships, has evolved well beyond being just a platform for trivial personal updates and wedding pictures. Social media, e-commerce, professional, political, educational, and dating sites, to mention just a few, shape our possibilities as individuals, consumers, employees, voters, students, and lovers. Our group also seeks to advance the state of the art in social computing, with a particular focus on embedding values in technology, including areas such as education, public health, and disaster response, and topics such as algorithmic fairness and crowdsourcing.

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