Dr. Zeynep Tufekci to Join Columbia Journalism School’s Craig Newmark Center for Journalism Ethics and Security
Zeynep Tufekci, a leading scholar and writer on the complex relationship between technology and society, will be joining Columbia Journalism School’s faculty as a visiting professor in the fall of 2021 to shape the school’s new Craig Newmark Center for Journalism Ethics and Security.
Tufekci is currently an associate professor at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill at the School of Information and Library Science and a faculty associate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, WIRED and Scientific American, among other publications. Professor Tufekci’s book "Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest" (Yale University Press, 2017) examined the competing innovations and weaknesses of digital tools in mass social movements.
Tufekci completed a B.A. in sociology from Istanbul University and an undergraduate degree from Bosphorus University. She earned an M.A. and a Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. Her early career was in computer programming before turning her attention to the social sciences.
"Columbia Journalism School is honored to welcome Zeynep Tufekci’s critical insights and groundbreaking scholarship to our school at a time when misinformation, algorithmic manipulation of news and attacks against fact-based reporting have forced the world to rethink the use of digital technology and social platforms," said Steve Coll, Columbia Journalism School Dean and Henry R. Luce Professor of Journalism. "We are proud that Prof. Tufekci will be at the forefront of the school’s efforts to prepare the next generation of journalists for the challenges that lie ahead."
Columbia Journalism School established the Craig Newmark Center for Journalism Ethics and Security and its faculty chair to advance journalism ethics education and industry practices in the digital age with a $10 million gift from Craig Newmark Philanthropies, created by craigslist founder Craig Newmark. Newmark is also a member of the Columbia Journalism Review Board of Overseers. The center will fortify in this new era the school’s ethics curriculum, which is required of all Master of Science students. It will prepare emerging journalists with tools to address ethical and security challenges now faced by newsrooms and journalists covering an era of deliberately manufactured disinformation and widespread misinformation. Tufekci has been writing extensively during the last year about the coronavirus pandemic, misinformation and what she calls the pursuit of "a healthy public sphere."
Citing Tufekci’s early warnings about the need for widespread mask use to fight COVID-19 and the danger of social media in fueling ethnic cleansing and radicalization, among other prescient observations, New York Times Columnist Ben Smith wrote that Tufekci has "made a habit of being right about the big things."
"I'm delighted to join Columbia Journalism School as a visiting professor at such a crucial period," Tufekci said. "The pandemic has put all of our institutions under a stress test, and periods of such upheaval are not only important for what they reveal and teach us, but also for forging a better path forward. I look forward to helping shape this new center generously supported by Craig Newmark so that it can contribute to efforts to work towards a healthier public sphere that works better for all of us as we navigate a complex and multifaceted societal and technological transition."
About Columbia Journalism School
For more than a century, the Columbia Journalism School has been preparing journalists in programs that stress academic rigor, ethics, journalistic inquiry, and professional practice. Founded with a gift from Joseph Pulitzer, the school opened in 1912 and offers a Master of Science, Master of Arts, Master of Science in Data Journalism, a joint Master of Science degree in Computer Science and Journalism, The Knight-Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism and a Doctor of Philosophy in Communications. It houses the Columbia Journalism Review, the Brown Institute for Media Innovation, The Tow Center for Digital Journalism, The Ira A. Lipman Center for Journalism and Civil and Human Rights, and the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma. In addition to the Pulitzer Prizes, the school administers many other leading journalism awards, including the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, the Maria Moors Cabot Prizes, the John Chancellor Award, the John B. Oakes Award for Distinguished Environmental Journalism, Dart Awards for Excellence in Coverage of Trauma, the Paul Tobenkin Memorial Award, the Mike Berger Awards and the WERT Prize for Women Business Journalists. Journalism.columbia.edu