Julia B Barnett




she / her

PhD Candidate at Northwestern

Hello! I'm Julia Barnett and I'm a PhD student in Technology and Social Behavior, which is a dual PhD program in computer science and communications at Northwestern University. My research interests lie in algorithmic ethics and transparency, reducing the sociotechnical harms of algorithmic systems, and deep generative applications in social contexts. Most recently I built a framework for identifying the most similar songs from training data to pieces of generated music in order to enable training data attribution of generative music models.

I'm advised by Nicholas Diakopoulos, and right now we are researching different areas in the ethical AI space. Lately we have focused on the ability to anticipate societal impacts of algorithms through mediums such as crowdsourcing. Currently I am working with Ágnes Horvát investigating the intersectional penalty of gender and ethnic diversity of scientific teams on success in scientific publications and also with Bryan Pardo to build an interface that uncovers the influences of generated pieces of music to provide a path for the end-user to move from ignorant appropriator to informed creator.

I completed a Master's Degree in Data Science at the Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in 2019, and I got my Bachelor's Degree in Business Analytics, International Business, and Marketing from Villanova University in 2018. Before my PhD I finished up a two year stint as a Senior Data Analyst at The Washington Post.

Recent Updates

February 2024: Successfully defedned my computer science qualifying exam! 🥳

January 2024: Released a pre-print for new work: Exploring Musical Roots: Applying Audio Embeddings to Empower Influence Attribution for a Generative Music Model

January 2024: Presented recent work on exploring musical roots: empowering influence attribution for generative music models at Northwestern's "Human-centered AI and Music: A One-day Symposium on the Design and Implications of Generative Models in Music." 🎵🤖

September 2023: Attended and did a poster presentation at the Chicago Human+AI Lab (CHAI)'s Symposium on Human+AI.

August 2023: Presented my paper on  The Ethical Implications of Generative Audio Models: A Systematic Literature Review at Artificial Intelligence, Ethics, and Society (AIES) 2023 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

August 2023: My work on the ethical implications of generative audio models was featured in the Montreal AI Ethics Institute blog.

June 2023: Presented on joint work with Orsolya Vásárhelyi, Ágnes Horvát, and Stasa Milojevic about intersectional inequalities in the success of scientific publication at the International Conference on Science of Science and Innovation at Northwestern University in Evanston.

June 2023: Finished all my coursework! 🤠