Minderoo Initiative on Tech & Power Announces Tech Impact Network Dissertation Fellows

UCLA Center for Critical Internet Inquiry awards fellowships to support dissertations that engage with Critical Internet Studies


The Tech Impact Network Dissertation Fellowship is designed to offer assist with doctoral student dissertation work including field research and data analysis. This program is designed to release students from any employment obligations that might act as a barrier to dissertation work as well as provide mentors associated with C2i2 in support of their projects.

UCLA Center for Critical Internet Inquiry is thrilled to announce our four 2022 fellowship recipients:

Merriah Croston

Merriah Croston (@Merriah_withAnE) is a doctoral student in the Public Health Sciences program at Washington University in St. Louis where she is a Chancelor’s Graduate Fellow and Spencer T. and Ann W. Olin Fellow. Merriah was born and raised in Ohio and is a graduate of Georgetown University and Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health. She has theoretical and applied research interests in health information and health behavior diffusion with an emphasis on social media contexts. Her current research uses social network analysis to explore the ways in which COVID-19 misinformation spreads on Twitter and how this differs from other information types. In addition to her scholarly interests, Merriah is devoted to promoting gender and racial diversity in data science.

Kelsey Kim

Kelsey Kim (@kelseyk100) is a PhD candidate in Anthropology at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Her work examines the structural inequalities of the Silicon Valley tech industry, including but not limited to gender, race, and labor. Specifically, her research focuses on the efforts of tech workers who advocate for systemic change in the industry through various methods, from organized labor movements to developing tech-for-good. Inspired by her childhood in Silicon Valley, she strives to conduct social justice-oriented research that confronts issues deeply impacting her community.

Sarah Riley

Sarah Riley (@sarah_a_riley) is an information science PhD candidate at Cornell, where she studies municipal algorithmic systems, race/ism, and inequality. Her dissertation focuses on the administration of pretrial risk assessments in Virginia. She uses a mixed-methods approach to understand how human discretion in the pretrial process—particularly on the part of pretrial officers—affects risk scores, pretrial detention decisions, and life outcomes for accused people. She is advised by Solon Barocas and Karen Levy, and her work is funded by the Microsoft Research Ada Lovelace Fellowship. Her interest in municipal algorithmic systems arose while working at the New York City Department of Education and volunteering for the Dignity in Schools Campaign, a national coalition working to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline.She also has a master’s in public policy from the University of California, Berkeley and internship experience with a variety of organizations, including Data 4 Black Lives and Crime Lab New York.

Kat Brewster

Kat Brewster (@katbamkapow) is a PhD candidate at UC Irvine, whose work focuses on focuses on digital culture, with an emphasis on queer theory, archives, and how we tell the history of the internet. Her current project looks at the records of computer bulletin board systems which operated during the AIDS epidemic, and what it has historically meant to build a community online

This fund was made possible with support from Minderoo Foundation.