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PhD in analysis of human-level risks of information targeting H/F

This offer is available in the following languages:
Français - Anglais

Date Limite Candidature : mercredi 17 août 2022

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General information

Reference : UMR7161-OANBAL-001
Workplace : PALAISEAU
Date of publication : Wednesday, July 27, 2022
Scientific Responsible name : Oana Goga
Type of Contract : PhD Student contract / Thesis offer
Contract Period : 36 months
Start date of the thesis : 1 November 2022
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2 135 gross /month

Description of the thesis topic

We are witnessing a massive shift in the way people consume information. In the past, people had an active role in selecting the news they read. More recently, the information started to appear on people's social media feeds as a byproduct of one's social relations. At present, we see a new shift brought by the emergence of online advertising platforms where third parties can pay ad platforms to show specific information to particular groups of people through paid targeted ads. These targeting technologies are powered by AI- driven algorithms. Using these technologies to promote information, rather than to promote products as they were initially designed for, opens the way for interested groups to use user's personal data to manipulate them. European institutions recognize the risks, and many fear a weaponization of the technology to engineer polarization or manipulate voters.

The goal of this PhD is to study the risks with AI-driven information targeting at human level by understanding in which conditions targeted information can influence an individual's beliefs. The PhD will be able to take advantage of the technology we build for monitoring how users are targeted with information. The PhD will need to propose experimental designs that exploit our technology and are able to measure the human-level risks.

Work Context

The PhD will work at LIX under the supervision on Oana Goga.

The École Polytechnique Computer Science Laboratory (acronym LIX) is a joint CNRS and École Polytechnique unit (UMR 7161), and has Inria as a partner. It shares the Turing building on the École Polytechnique campus with the Inria Saclay—Île-de-France Research Center. The unit is made up of around 180 members, including around sixty permanent researchers/teacher-researchers from a wide variety of backgrounds, and whose main employers are the École Polytechnique, the CNRS, and Inria. It is organized into five poles, 13 research teams, including four joint project teams with Inria.
The LIX has numerous collaborations and industrial contracts and in particular several industrial chairs.

Constraints and risks

None

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