What is Feminist Data Science?

Monday 25 April 2022
15:00 - 16:30 (BST)
Online (via Zoom)

Dr Lauren F. Klein, associate professor and director of the Digital Humanities Lab at Emory University, will present at this UBDC research seminar.

Following Dr Klein's presentation, there will be the opportunity for attendees to pose questions.


What is feminist data science? How is feminist thinking being incorporated into data-driven work? And how are scholars in the humanities and social sciences, in particular, bringing together data science and feminist theory in their research?

Drawing from her recent book, Data Feminism (MIT Press), coauthored with Catherine D’Ignazio, Klein will present a set of principles for doing data science that are informed by the past several decades of intersectional feminist activism and critical thought. In order to illustrate these principles, as well as some of the ways that scholars and designers have begun to put them into action, she will discuss a range of recent research projects including several of her own: 1) a thematic analysis of a large corpus of nineteenth-century newspapers that reveals the invisible labor of women newspaper editors; 2) the development of a model of lexical semantic change that, when combined with network analysis, tells a new story about Black activism in the nineteenth-century United States; and 3) an interactive book on the history of data visualization that shows how questions of politics have been present in the field since its start. Taken together, these examples demonstrate how feminist thinking can be operationalized into more ethical, more intentional, and more capacious data practices, in the digital humanities, computational social science, human-computer interaction, and beyond.

Speaker biography

Lauren Klein is Winship Distinguished Research Professor and Associate Professor in the departments of English and Quantitative Theory & Methods at Emory University, where she also directs the Digital Humanities Lab. Before moving to Emory, she taught in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at Georgia Tech. Klein works at the intersection of digital humanities, data science, and early American literature, with a focus on issues of gender and race. She is the author of An Archive of Taste: Race and Eating in the Early United States (University of Minnesota Press, 2020) and, with Catherine D’Ignazio, Data Feminism (MIT Press, 2020). With Matthew K. Gold, she edits Debates in the Digital Humanities, a hybrid print-digital publication stream that explores debates in the field as they emerge. Her work has appeared in leading humanities journals including PMLA, American Literature, and American Quarterly; and at technical conferences including NACCL, EMNLP, and IEEE VIS. Her research has been supported by grants from the NEH and the Mellon Foundation.


Registration for this online event is available via Eventbrite and full details and instructions for joining will be circulated post-registration.


[Banner image: Data Feminism infographics by Catherine D’Ignazio, Lauren Klein and Marcia Diaz. 2020.]