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Illinois CS Equity & Justice in Computing Conversation: Dr. Seny Kamara, Brown University, "Algorithms for the People"

Event Type
The Department of Computer Science
Oct 21, 2020   5:00 pm  
D'Mayza McClure

Abstract: Algorithms have transformed every aspect of society, including communication, transportation, commerce, finance, and health. The revolution enabled by computing has been extraordinarily valuable. The largest tech companies—Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft and Facebook—generate over $800 billion a year and employ 1 million people. But technology does not affect everyone in the same way. In this talk, we will examine how new technologies, ranging from facial recognition to drones, are affecting marginalized communities. We will then think about what technology would look like if its goal was to serve the disenfranchised as opposed to the powerful.


Bio: Seny Kamara is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Brown University and Chief Scientist at Aroki Systems. Before joining Brown, he was a researcher at Microsoft Research (Redmond Lab). His research is in cryptography and is driven by real-world problems from privacy, security and surveillance. He has worked extensively on the design and cryptanalysis of encrypted search algorithms, which are efficient algorithms to search on end-to-end encrypted data. He maintains interests in various aspects of theory and systems, including applied and theoretical cryptography, data structures and algorithms, databases, networking, game theory and technology policy. He directs the Encrypted Systems Lab and am affiliated with the CAPS group, the Data Science Initiative and the Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies.


Faculty Host: Colleen Lewis.

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