Friday, March 10, 2017

Prof. LIsa AustinIndividual lives are increasingly “datafied” and this information is collected, warehoused, analyzed and distributed across the globe on a massive scale. As individuals become more and more “transparent,” the technology that is driving this massive transformation becomes more and more opaque. This “transparency gap” is a problem for all stakeholders in the information age. Individuals cannot make choices that reflect their values, companies cannot innovate, and governments cannot regulate in an informational world that is “dark.”

The Information Technology, Transparency, and Transformation (IT3) Lab, a novel collaboration proposed by Professor Lisa Austin and co-investigators David Lie (Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering) and Avi Goldfarb (Rotman School of Management), recently received a $250,000 Connaught Global Challenge Award to address this transparency gap.  The IT3 Lab seeks to develop new technologies and practices that will make the implications and effects of information collection, storage and analysis transparent to individuals, companies and governments.

This internal award funded by the Connaught Fund is designed to support new collaborations aimed at resolving globally pressing issues.  Teams bring together leading UofT researchers and students from multiple disciplines, along with international collaborators at other universities and innovators and thoughts leaders from other sectors.

“I’d like to congratulate all of the recipients of this year’s Connaught Global Challenge Award,” said Professor Vivek Goel, U of T’s vice-president of research and innovation.  “These projects all tackle immensely important and complicated global problems.”