Sam Woolley

Samuel Woolley is the Director of Research of the Computational Propaganda project. His work focuses on the intersection of political communication and automation—with a specific focus on political bots on social media platforms.

Sam Woolley is part of OII’s Computational Propaganda research team, a European Research Council (ERC) funded endeavour led by Professor and Principal Investigator Phil Howard. Sam specializes in the study of automation and politics, with special interests in political communication and science and technology studies. His work on bots and public opinion has been published in several academic journals and collections. For his research, he has been featured in publications such as Wired, Fast Company, the Washington Post, the Economist, and Bloomberg. Sam is a PhD Candidate (ABD) at the University of Washington in the Department of Communication. He has a Master of Arts in Cultural Studies from the Claremont Graduate University and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from the University of San Diego. He is a fellow at the TechPolicy Lab at the UW School of Law and a former fellow of the Center for Media, Data, and Society at Central European University.

Research Interests:

Automation, political communication, artificial intelligence, public policy, science and technology studies, comparative research, ethnography, mixed methods, propaganda.

Position held at the OII

  • Research Assistant, September 2016 –

Current projects

  • Computational Propaganda

    Participants: Professor Philip Howard, Sam Woolley, Gillian Bolsover

    This project will focus on how bots, algorithms and other forms of automation are used by political actors in countries around the world.

Past projects