EuADS Online Symposium

Data, Social Media and Society

Sabine Krolak-Schwerdt Public Lecture

Understanding Human Network Behavior: Ideas for Reforming Social Media

Professor of Media Arts and Sciences | Toshiba Professor
| Media Lab Entrepreneurship Program Director

Prof. Alex Pentland was co-creator of the MIT Media Lab, founder of the MIT Connection Science and Human Dynamics Labs, and leads the Media Lab Entrepreneurship Program.

One of the most cited authors in the computational sciences and a member of the US National Academies, he is also influential in national policy and is currently advising the EU, China, the US, and several developing countries, and is a member of the Board of the UN Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data.

Recent large-scale experiments have given us quantitative models of human decision making that allow predictive modeling of crowd behavior across many situations. These models suggest ways of reforming social media that go beyond suppression of fake news and bots, and have proven track records in other digital platforms. Two innovations in particular appear to be critical: unique, reliable identity, and use-specific reputation mechanisms.