Scott A. Hale is a research assistant and doctoral candidate at the Oxford Internet Institute of the University of Oxford, UK. I am interested in how the design of a social media platform affects the amount of information shared across language divides on that platform. I am further interested in what the effects are of increased information sharing across languages for platforms and users. While the Internet presents the opportunity to consume information from far-flung corners of the world, a natural tendency to interact with others similar to us (homophily) causes this diversity-enhancing potential of the Internet to be under realized. I am investigating both the technological and social factors around cross-language knowledge sharing.
I am currently working as a research assistant on a three-year ESRC funded research program on The Internet, Public Policy and Political Science: Collective Action, Governance and Citizen-Government Interactions in the Digital Era. I also manage the Oxford Experimental Laboratory (OxLab), which runs economic and political science laboratory and field experiments to investigate the effect of different information environments on collective action and the impact of different types of government provision on citizens’ information seeking behavior.
I graduated with degrees in Computer Science, Mathematics, and Spanish from Eckerd College, FL, USA. During my time at Eckerd, I published computer science research in the area of image processing while working on a larger research project called Darwin. After graduating, I worked in Okinawa, Japan, at the Okinawa Prefectural Education Center with public school teachers to develop English immersion curricula and with IT professionals to deliver continuing education training through the Internet to staff members and students on outlying islands. I came to the OII as a master’s candidate in October 2009.
For my master’s thesis, I studied one aspect of knowledge sharing: cross-lingual interaction in the blogosphere. My master’s thesis constructed a dataset of over 100,000 blog entries discussing the 2010 Haitian earthquake in Spanish, Japanese, and English. I examined this set with hyperlink analysis and qualitatively coded the cross-lingual links. The thesis earned distinction, and an adapted version of the research has been published in the Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication.