Scott A. Hale is Director of Research at Meedan, an Associate Professor and Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute of the University of Oxford, and a Fellow at the Alan Turing Institute. My cross-disciplinary research focuses on increasing equitable access to quality information. I develop and apply new techniques in the computational sciences to social science questions and put the results into practice with industry and policy partners. I am particularly interested in applied multilingual natural language processing, computational sociolinguistics, mobilization/collective action, agenda setting, and misinformation and have a strong track record in building tools and teaching programmes that enable wider access to new methods and forms of data.
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 and my master’s research on analyzing cross-language information sharing between bloggers earned distinction. I completed my doctorate in 2015 at the same department, and my doctoral research examined the roles of platform design and social factors in the sharing of information between speakers of different languages on user-generated content platforms.
I became Director of Research at Meedan in August 2019 alongside my Oxford position after having collaborated with Meedan for many years. In this role I am working to bridge academia and industry divides and tackle a defining issue of our time, misinformation. Meedan is a technology non-for-profit widening access to quality information and making sense of the global web through training, building technology, conducting research, and convening actors across academia, industry, and civil society in meaningful dialogue.