Go to current site for Kate Starbird at UW

I am a PhD candidate at the University of Colorado Boulder at the Alliance for Technology, Learning and Society (ATLAS) Institute. I am also a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellow. As a member of Professor Leysia Palen's Project EPIC (Empowering the Public in Crisis) research team, my research focuses broadly on the use of social media during crises and mass emergencies, and specifically examines how digital volunteers and other members of the connected crowd help to organize information during disaster. 

I combine empirical analysis of social media communications, interviews, and participant observation within a digital volunteer community with quantitative analysis of large data sets of microblogging (Twitter) communications to investigate patterns of human behavior that constitute the "crowdsourcing" phenomenon during crises. I am also currently examining how this behavior fits in to existing frameworks for human computation and collective intelligence.

In 2009, I co-created the Tweak the Tweet concept, an idea for leveraging Twitter as a crisis-data reporting platform, during a Random Hacks of Kindness (RHOK) barcamp event. I have since helped to deploy the idea during numerous events and significantly developed the software architecture to support it. I have also developed a software system for the qualitative analysis of large computer-mediated communication (CMC) data sets (E-DataViewer), utilized for several research efforts within Project EPIC.

I received my Bachelor's degree in Computer Science from Stanford University, where I also competed for the Women’s Basketball Team, earning All-America and Academic All-America honors. Between 1997 and 2006, I played professional basketball in the ABL, WNBA, and several European leagues.

Curriculum Vitae