Facebook award for IIT Kharagpur faculty for research in targeted media bias

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Updated: September 28, 2019 8:02:35 PM

Animesh Mukherjee, Associate Professor at the Computer Science and Engineering department, has been selected for the Ethics in Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research Award in the 'operationalizing ethics' category for his project.

Facebook, Facebook award, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Kharagpur professor, AI Research Award, IIT KGP, Animesh Mukherjee, education newsThe award-winning project which is part of a collaborative work with Prof Pawan Goyal and PhD student Souvic Chakraborty, deals with the issue of fake news.

An IIT Kharagpur professor has been named for Ethics in AI Research Award, which is part of Facebook’s initiative, for his project dealing with bias in Indian media. Animesh Mukherjee, Associate Professor at the Computer Science and Engineering department, has been selected for the Ethics in Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research Award in the ‘operationalizing ethics’ category for his project “Targeted Bias in Indian Media Outlets”, an IIT KGP statement said on Saturday.

The award is part of Facebook’s initiative to encourage research on AI ethics and address intricate challenges and complex ethical questions in the AI domain, the statement said. The award-winning project which is part of a collaborative work with Prof Pawan Goyal and PhD student Souvic Chakraborty, deals with the issue of fake news. Mukherjee, who has been working in the areas of AI, big data analytics and information retrieval, has arrived at a solution in leveraging available information on online published media “to predict fake news or identify bias in a news media article,” the statement said.

“One of the major challenges in this work is formulating something as abstract as ‘bias’ in a quantifiable manner,” he remarked. The team had collected 20-years’ data of three national media outlets and quantified bias on three metrics -coverage bias, word choice bias and topic choice bias.

The team further plans to extend the reach of their study to local and digital media outlets. On the future roadmap of this project, Mukherjee said they have plans to develop browser extensions to show bias score in real time. As India crosses the half a billion smartphone users’ mark, it is more important than ever to characterize information available online through automatic algorithms and auto-updating knowledge bases to restrict the spread of falsehood, the statement said.

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