Dr. Safiya U. Noble is a Professor at UCLA in the Departments of Gender Studies and African American Studies. She is a Research Associate to the Oxford Internet Institute at the University of Oxford. Currently, she is the Co-Founder of the UCLA Center for Critical Internet Inquiry and Co-Director of the Minderoo Initiative on Technology and Power. In 2021, she was recognized as a MacArthur Foundation Fellow (also known as the “Genius Award”) for her ground-breaking work on algorithmic discrimination. In 2022, she was recognized as the inaugural NAACP-Archewell Digital Civil Rights Award recipient.
She is the author of a best-selling academic book on racist and sexist algorithmic bias in commercial search engines, entitled Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism (NYU Press), which has been widely-reviewed in journals and periodicals including the Los Angeles Review of Books, featured in the New York Public Library 2018 Best Books for Adults (non-fiction), and recognized by Bustle magazine as one of 10 Books about Race to Read Instead of Asking a Person of Color to Explain Things to You.
She is regularly quoted for her expertise on issues of algorithmic discrimination and technology bias by national and international press including The Guardian, the BBC, CNN International, USA Today, Wired, Time, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, The New York Times, and Virginia Public Radio, and a host of local news and podcasts, including Science Friction, and Science Friday to name a few. Recently, she was named in the “Top 25 Doers, Dreamers, and Drivers of 2019” by Government Technology magazine.
Safiya is the recipient of a Hellman Fellowship and the UCLA Early Career Award. Her academic research focuses on the design of digital media platforms on the internet and their impact on society. Her work is both sociological and interdisciplinary, marking the ways that digital media impacts and intersects with issues of race, gender, culture, and technology.
Additionally, Dr. Noble is the co-editor of two edited volumes: The Intersectional Internet: Race, Sex, Culture and Class Online and Emotions, Technology & Design. She currently serves as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Critical Library and Information Studies, and is the co-editor of the Commentary & Criticism section of the Journal of Feminist Media Studies. She is a member of several academic journal and advisory boards, and holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Library & Information Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a B.A. in Sociology from California State University, Fresno.
Research & Scholarly Interests:
Search engine ethics
Racial and gender bias in algorithms
Socio-cultural, economic and ethical implications of information in society
Race, gender and sexuality in information communication technologies
Digital technology and Internet policy development
Privacy and surveillance
Information and/as control
Critical information studies