Who we are

Natali Helberger

Natali Helberger, distinguished professor of Law at the University of Amsterdam and co-founder of our AI, Media & Democracy Lab. 

Read more about Natali Helberger here

Claes de Vreese

Claes H. de Vreese, co-founder of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, is Distinguished Faculty Professor of Artificial Intelligence, Data and Democracy and Professor at the University of Amsterdam. 

Read more about Claes H. de Vreese here

Nanda Piersma

Nanda Piersma, board member of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, is associated with the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (HvA), the Centre for Mathematics and Computer Science (CWI) and the Intelligent and Autonomous Systems (IAS) group.

Read more about Nanda Piersma here

Pascal Wiggers

Pascal Wiggers, board member of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, is an Associate Lecturer for Responsible Artificial Intelligence at the Faculty of Digital Media & Creative Industry (FDMCI) at the University of Applied Science (HvA). 

Read more about Pascal Wiggers here

Pablo Cesar

Pablo Cesar, board member of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, is the leader of the Distributed and Interactive Systems (DIS) group at Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI) and is a Professor in the Multimedia Computing group at TU Delft.

Read more about Pablo Cesar here

Han La Poutré

Han La Poutré, board member of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, is senior researcher at CWI, conducts research that focusses on multi-agent and computational intelligence techniques. 

Read more about Han La Poutré here

Tamara Witschge

Tamara Witschge is applied professor Crossmedia at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (AUAS). Her research explores innovation, creativity and (social) change in and trough media.

Read more about Tamara Witschge here

Eric Pauwels

Dr. Eric Pauwels is senior researcher at CWI and leader of CWI’s  Intelligent and Autonomous Systems research group. His current research focuses on the application of computational intelligence including optimization. 

Read more about Dr. Eric Pauwels here

Laura Hollink

Dr. Laura Hollink is a tenured researcher at CWI with an interest in both knowledge representation and human computer interaction. 

Read more about Laura Hollink here

Abdallah El Ali

Abdallah El Ali is a Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) researcher with a strong background in Cognitive Science. He holds the position of a tenured research scientist at Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI). 

Read more about Abdallah El Ali here

Davide Ceolin

Davide Ceolin is a tenured researcher within the Human-Centered Data Analytics group at CWI. His research revolves around the assessment of online information quality, emphasizing transparency, explainability, and (semi-)automation. 

Read more about Davide Ceolin here

Theresa Seipp

Theresa is a PhD candidate at IViR. Her research is primarily concerned with regulating the opinion power and political power of digital platforms in the fields of European media law and policy, fundamental rights, especially media freedom and pluralism, and platform regulation. 

Read more about Theresa here

Valeria Resendez

Ph.D. candidate Valeria is passionate about exploring emerging technologies in journalism with a focus on conversational agents, as well as their intersection with political communication, and current regulatory proposals for AI.

Read more about Valeria here

Sara Spaargaren

As our manager, Sara is the heart and soul of the AI, Media & Democracy Lab. Being the central point of contact between all our researchers, and public and societal partners, she enables the exchange of ideas by connecting stakeholders, organizing panels, and more.

Read more about Sara here.

Hannes Cools

Hannes' interest in emerging technologies started when he was working as a journalist. As a postdoctoral researcher at our Lab, Hannes’ research interests include (generative) AI, computational journalism, algorithmic recommender systems and newsroom innovation.

Read more about Hannes here

Sanne Vrijenhoek

Sanne is a PhD candidate at the University of Amsterdam’s Institute for Information Law. Between her combined experience as a member of the Lab, PhD at the Law faculty, a degree Artificial Intelligence and previous work experience as a consultant, Sanne is a truly interdisciplinary researcher.

Read more about Sanne here

Tomás Dodds

Tomás is an Assistant Professor at Leiden University and a Faculty Associate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University. His research interests include artificial intelligence and automation in the media sector, immersive technologies, civic data science, and governance of technologies and the Internet.

Read more about Tomás here

Max van Drunen

Max is a postdoc at the Institute for Information Law, where he researches the responsibilities companies have when they use AI to produce and distribute information. He has focused in particular on the use of personalisation to distribute news and political advertisements. 

Read more about Max here

Anna Schjøtt Hansen

Anna Schjøtt Hansen is a PhD Candidate at the Media Studies department at the University of Amsterdam. In her current research, she is interested in the on-the-ground political dynamics that emerge from how AI is represented, developed, and used in the media context. 

Read more about Anna here

Nick Diakopoulos

Nicholas is an associate professor at Northwestern University, and joined the AI, Media and Democracy lab on a sabbatical year. His research focuses on computational journalism, including aspects of automation and algorithms in news production, algorithmic accountability and transparency, and social media in news contexts. 

Read more about Nicholas here

Ella Teuscher

As a student-assistant, Ella co-manages an editorial group, generates content for external stakeholders online and assists with research. 

Read more about Ella here

Sophie Morosoli

Sophie, a postdoctoral researcher at the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, with a background in political communication research, is currently studying individuals' attitudes towards AI in journalism, particularly focusing on trust, risk perceptions, and authenticity.

Read more about Sophie here

Stanislaw Piasecki

Stanislaw is a postdoctoral researcher in information law at IViR, University of Amsterdam. He is currently exploring the topic of the use of AI in media and journalism (from a legal and policy perspective) and collaborating on interdisciplinary projects in this context.

Read more about Stanislaw here

Laurens Naudts

Laurens Naudts is a postdoctoral researcher at IViR where he investigates the structural, social and relational dynamics that constitute a digitally mediated society, including positions of power and privilege and acts and structures of oppression and domination. 

Read more about Laurens here

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Valentin Robu

Valentin Robu is a senior researcher in the Intelligent and Autonomous Systems Group at CWI. As a member of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, Valentin is especially interested in understanding how disinformation can spread in social networks, often mediated by AI-enabled chatbots and content generation tools.

Read more about Valentin here

Manel Slokom

Manel is a part-time postdoctoral researcher at human-centered data analytics group at CWI. Within the the AI, Media and Democracy Lab, she investigates several questions related to bias, fairness, diversity and reliable evaluation in recommender systems.

Read more about Manel here

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Aqsa Farooq
Aqsa is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Amsterdam, working primarily on the European Digital Media Observatory (EDMO) project on tackling online disinformation. Alongside her work with EDMO, her research revolves around the impact of disinformation on users and citizens, with a focus on the challenges posed by AI.
Read more about Aqsa here.
Kimon Kieslich

Kimon is a postdoctoral researcher in the project Anticipating AI impact in a Diverse Society at the Institute for Information Law, University of Amsterdam. His current research focuses on developing a scenario-based, diversity-sensitive method for assessing the societal impact of AI systems and regulations.

Read more about Kimon here.

Zilin Lin

Zilin is a part-time postdoctoral researcher at the AI, Media & Democracy Lab. She has a background in Communication Science and is currently finishing her PhD in the NEWSFLOWS project at the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR). She uses different computational methods to study news in the digital era.

Read more about Zilin here

Pippa Jones

Pippa Jones is a researcher and teacher at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. Most of her research takes place at the Responsible AI Lab, where she aims to make the individual, social and ethical implications of AI explainable to a diverse range of audiences.

Read more about Pippa here.

Wouter van Atteveldt

Wouter van Atteveldt is an interdisciplinary researcher and assistant professor at the VU in Computational Communication Science & Political Communication. His research focuses on fragmented digital landscapes and data donations.


Read more about Wouter here

Karthikeya Venkatraj
Karthikeya currently works as a Research engineer at Distributed and Interactive Systems (DIS) group at Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica (CWI). As a representative of CWI, his primary objective is to facilitate collaborations between CWI researchers and other stakeholders of the AI, Media and Democracy lab. 
Read more about Karthikeya here