Mobile Development: Feature to Promote Sales for a Movie Streaming Application; How Sociotechnical Factors Create Gender Biases within Google’s Search Engine Algorithms

Wilkins, Kiana, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Wayland, Kent, EN-Engineering and Society PV-International Studies PV-Institutional Research and Analytics, University of Virginia
Morrison, Briana, EN-Comp Science Dept, University of Virginia

Software applications have become essential parts of people’s daily routines due to the integration of technology in almost all aspects of life. When creating software, teams from multiple areas of expertise from designers to engineers utilize the software development life cycle (SDLC) which is a process-driven methodology for producing high-quality software. With this huge and growing industry, each person must be aware of how their decisions could impact the final software product as well as its users. My STS and technical project aim to showcase the importance of the decision-making process throughout the software development lifecycle and how these decisions can affect its users. The technical portion delves into how the UI of a new application feature aimed to promote movie sales, impacts user behavior and emotions. This section will provide a clearer view of the application development process as well as how decisions made by non-technical roles have the power to directly influence user actions on an application. In my STS Research topic, I will specifically discuss the impact gender bias has on algorithms used by search engines and how these biases could be avoided through different potential methods. My research will focus primarily on gender bias in Google’s search engine algorithm as it is by far the top-used search engine worldwide.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
gender bias, search engines, search engine algorithms, google search engine, algorithmic bias, gender bias in algorithms

School of Engineering and Applied Science
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
Technical Advisor: Briana Morrison
STS Advisor: Kent Wayland

Issued Date: