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Northwestern Buffett Institute for Global Affairs

AI and Social Movements

About the Project

Social movements evolve over time, and their varied activities, aims, and formations play a significant role in shaping our world of experience. However, there are few reliable platforms that allows journalists, researchers, and policy makers to gain a robust understanding of how social movements evolve and what impacts they might have in their communities. Our work aims to address the limited and fragmentary information we have of social movements by building the models necessary to comprehensively track their life-cycles.

Group Members


  • V.S. Subrahmanian, Computer Science, McCormick School of Engineering
  • Brayden King, Management & Organizations, Kellogg School of Management

Group members:

  • Sirus Bouchat, Political Science, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences
  • Kate Compton, Computer Science, McCormick School of Engineering
  • Jeremy Gilbert, Medill School of Journalism
  • Dan Linna, Pritzker School of Law
  • Aaron Shaw, Communication Studies, School of Communication
  • Rob Voigt, Linguistics, Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences

Latest Work and Developments

Work Underway

  • The AI and Social Movements Group is developing SMART, a Social Movement Analysis & Reasoning Tool that will serve as a global real-time web portal that tracks social movements from around the world. The group will also establish legal and ethically sound methods of disseminating information about budding social movements to journalists and policymakers.