Bureau hires Kathleen Hall as algorithms reporter

The Bureau is pleased to announce the appointment of Kathleen Hall as algorithms reporter on our new project Decision Machines.

Working with Crofton Black and James Ball, she will investigate how big data, algorithms, machine learning, AI and other technologies are being used in governments’ decision-making.

Prior to joining the Bureau, Kathleen was senior reporter at The Register for five years, one of the UK’s largest technology sites, mainly covering government IT and policy. Her articles have frequently been picked up by the nationals and have also been cited in parliamentary inquiries.

She has also written for the Law Society Gazette, Computer Weekly and freelance articles for a number of national publications including The Financial Times and Private Eye.

Kathleen said: “I’m hugely excited to be starting at the Bureau, an organisation I have long admired.

“Personal data is coveted by both government and private companies to supposedly improve services. Yet it seems this is happening with little to no public debate. So who is really benefitting from its increasing usage?

“Questions need to be asked about issues of consent in data sharing; the reliability of untested processes such as automation; who is benefitting, and which people could be disadvantaged by the removal of human decision-making. I’m thrilled to be covering this important project.”

Decision Machines is a project investigating how big data, algorithms, machine learning, AI and other technologies and systems are increasingly affecting people’s lives. The Bureau will focus on how they are being used in government decision-making, what negative outcomes they may have and who is most at risk. The team will find out who is profiting from data systems, who is accountable for them and what, exactly, the public is not being told about it all.