< Research projects

Title

Gothenburg Research Intiative for Politically Emergent Systems (GRIPES)

About the project

New technology has given rise to brand new possibilities to tailor messages and direct them to groups where they will have the largest impact. In a research project led by Asad Sayeed, researchers from the University of Gothenburg will be investigating the ways in which artificial intelligence is used to sway public opinion.

Manipulative messages spread easily in social media and may contain loaded signal words that appear neutral, but which will be interpreted with a certain meaning within certain groups, for example in political debate.

These messages are often referred to as dogwhistles, as in the whistles that make a sound which can only be perceived by dogs, i.e. a type of message that is understood differently depending on who is listening.

The project is expected to provide knowledge on dogwhistles as a linguistic and political phenomenon. Even though the existence of dogwhistles is relatively well-known, research on the concept and its political significance is limited. Artificial intelligence may reinforce the effects, both by fine-tuning linguistic messages, and by sorting recipients in a way that amplifies the effect of the messages. Researchers at the University of Gothenburg want to carry out a more in-depth investigation into how and to what extent this happens. In addition, the researchers will study whether it is possible to develop tools to identify and simulate the effects of dogwhistles.

Duration

Start: 1 January 2020
End: 31 December 2024

Project type

MMW

Keywords

Universities and institutes

University of Gothenburg

Project members

Asad Sayeed

Asad Sayeed

Senior Lecturer

University of Gothenburg

Ellen Breitholtz

Ellen Breitholtz

Senior Lecturer

University of Gothenburg

Robin Cooper

Robin Cooper

University of Gothenburg

Elina Lindgren

Elina Lindgren

University of Gothenburg

Björn Rönnerstrand

Björn Rönnerstrand

University of Gothenburg

Gregor Rettenegger

Gregor Rettenegger

PhD student

University of Gothenburg