Technology, Data, Social Equity

mark j diaz
@sonriks4 photography
I’m a research scientist with Technology, AI, Society, and Culture (TASC) within the Research Center for Responsible AI and Human-Centered Technology (RAI-HCT) at Google. I completed my Ph.D. in Technology & Social Behavior, a joint program in Computer Science and Communication at Northwestern University. My primary research probes the origins of social bias in data sets and its influence on algorithmic performance. Most recently, I have been exploring data annotation and the relationship between annotator positionality and the labels annotators produce in subjective tasks, such as hate speech annotation. I also explore approaches to involving members of underrepresented groups in the development and evaluation of data-driven systems.

I’m a mixed methods researcher, drawing from my background in Human-Computer Interaction to research data annotation as well as dataset evaluation. In my work I have made use of a range of techniques including participant interviews, surveys, thematic analysis, experimental design, and language modeling. I was advised by Darren Gergle and my other committee members included Nicholas Diakopoulos, Sheena Erete, and Anne Marie Piper.

Before beginning my doctoral work, I worked in Accenture Labs developing virtual reality mobile applications and worked as a research assistant and virtual reality programmer studying social identity in the Virtual Human Interaction Lab with Jeremy Bailenson at Stanford University (VHIL).