What does a new academic-industry partnership mean for funders and media makers seeking to assess impact? The Social Data Initiative, a partnership between Facebook, academics, and large foundations—including the Democracy Fund, the Hewlett Foundation, the Knight Foundation, and others—“promises to radically reshape the state of research on social media, civic engagement, and political participation.” The partnership is unprecedented: “Facebook provides the data, foundations provide the money, and a panel of academic experts shapes the research agenda and ensures the data won’t be abused and important findings won’t be silenced.”Read more
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