Department: Department of Sociology
Research Interests: Algorithmic decision aids, technology and inequality, public policy, computational social science
Simone Zhang’s research examines the social consequences of systems that institutions adopt for categorizing and assigning scores to individuals in criminal justice, social policy, and public services. Her work analyzes how these systems shape decisions that affect people’s access to resources and justice, as well as how they influence public perceptions of institutions. She is especially interested in whether new technologies reinforce or disrupt prevailing inequalities in how people are evaluated and treated by institutions. Her recent projects have examined the impact of algorithmic risk assessments on courtroom practices and public attitudes toward institutional uses of predictive modeling.