Like many countries, the U.S. is increasingly politically polarized and culturally fragmented, with politics that reinforces divides and media that prioritize divergent perspectives. This talk overviews an effort to bridge these gaps and to build a unique physical-digital network – the Local Voices Network (LVN) – designed to foster constructive public conversations in communities and in the media that help people understand one another better. More broadly, LNV seeks to promote a country that is better connected through more constructive and empathetic public discourse. LVN’s listening system encompasses:
LVN is being developed by Cortico, a nonprofit corporation, in cooperation with the Laboratory for Social Machines based at the MIT Media Lab. LVN has been deployed in Madison, WI
Deb Roy is an Associate Professor at MIT where he directs the Laboratory for Social Machines (LSM) based at the Media Lab. His lab conducts research in applied machine learning and human-machine interaction with applications in children’s learning, social listening, and understanding large scale media ecosystems. Roy is also co-founder and Chairman of Cortico, a social venture that develops scalable media technologies and services to foster a healthy public sphere.
Roy was co-founder and CEO of Bluefin Labs, a media analytics company that analyzed the interactions between television and social media at scale. Bluefin was acquired by Twitter in 2013, Twitter’s largest acquisition of the time. From 2013-2017 Roy served as Twitter’s Chief Media Scientist. Roy received his Bachelor of Applied Science from the University of Waterloo and