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Lior Zalmanson
Lior Zalmanson

Cornell Tech

When (ET)


When Algorithms Are Your Boss: The Anatomy of Algorithmic Management


When humans first imagined robots and computers in the workplace, they envisioned them as servants or supporters of humankind. However, the integration of technology in the workplace has evolved. In recent years, numerous online platforms, such as Uber or Doordash, have been "employing" large numbers of human workers for tasks supervised, controlled, and managed by algorithms - a phenomenon known as algorithmic management. This shift in the role of technology raises several critical questions, such as how it feels to have an AI algorithm as a boss and how human workers react to maltreatment by algorithms. In this session, Lior Zalmanson will share insights from his recent academic studies on the impact of algorithmic management on human workers in platform-mediated work. He will explore the intersection of technology and labor relations, examining the ramifications of algorithmic management for the future of work.


Dr. Lior Zalmanson is a senior lecturer (assistant professor) at the Technology and Information Management Program, Coller School of Management, Tel Aviv University. His research interests include social media, user engagement, internet business models, human-AI interaction, and algorithmic management. His research has won awards and grants from Fulbright Foundation, GIF (German-Israeli Foundations), Grant for the Web, Dan David Prize, Google, Marketing Science Institute, Social Informatics SIG, among others. His works were published in top venues such as MIS Quarterly, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Management Information Systems, and MIT Sloan Review. His studies were covered in The Times, Independent, HBR, PBS, Fast Company, including numerous mentions in the Israeli media. In 2021, he received the Association of Information Systems Researchers' Early Career Award, acknowledging a combination of research, teaching, and service to the community. He also received multiple teaching awards for his experiential courses in user engagement and online communities. Formerly he was an assistant professor at the University of Haifa, a postdoctoral Fulbright fellow at NYU, and a research fellow at the Metropolitan Museum Media Lab. Lior is also the founder of the Print Screen Festival, Israel's digital culture festival, which connects internet researchers, activists, and artists. Furthermore, he is a grant and award-winning digital artist, playwright, and screenwriter. His most recent VR work (about the bystander syndrome) debuted at the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival.

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