As the lead statistician at the nonprofit Human Rights Data Analysis Group, Kristian Lum, 33, is trying to make sure the algorithms increasingly controlling our lives are as fair as possible. She’s especially focused on the controversial use of predictive policing and sentencing programs in the criminal justice system.
When it comes to bias, Lum isn’t concerned only with algorithms. In a widely read December blog post, she described harassment she’d experienced at academic conferences when she was a doctoral student at Duke University and an assistant research professor at Virginia Tech. No longer in academia, she uses statistics to examine pressing human-rights problems.
Author: Ellen Huet