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Research Intern - Social Media Collective

Cambridge, Massachusetts
Closing date
Dec 19, 2021

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Position Type
Research Scientist / Analyst
Full Time
Media Studies
Organization Type
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Virtual Internship

Participation in the Research Internship Program requires that you are physically located in the United States or Canada for the duration of the internship.

Research Internships at Microsoft provide a dynamic environment for research careers with a network of world-class research labs led by globally-recognized scientists and engineers. Our researchers and engineers pursue innovation in a range of scientific and technical disciplines to help solve complex challenges in diverse fields, including computing, healthcare, economics, and the environment.

Microsoft Research New England (MSRNE), part of the global network of Microsoft Research Labs, is looking for advanced PhD students to join the Social Media Collective (SMC) for its 12-week Internship program. The Social Media Collective (in New England, we are Nancy Baym, Tarleton Gillespie, and Mary L. Gray, with current postdocs Niall Docherty and Karina Rider) brings together empirical and critical perspectives to understand the political and cultural dynamics that underpin social media technologies. Our affiliated social science and humanistic researchers include full-time researchers, postdocs, interns, research assistants, and visitors. Our primary purpose is to bring rich contextual understandings to analyses of the social and cultural dynamics that underpin social media technologies. Our work spans several disciplines: anthropology, communication, economics, gender and sexuality studies, information, law, media studies, science & technology studies, and sociology.

Current projects in New England include:
  • How do people build social capital with each other in remote and hybrid work, and how do those processes facilitate or harm inclusion?
  • How do discourses and designs of ideal social media habits function within apparatuses of platform capitalism?
  • How do social media platforms, through algorithmic design and content policies, serve as custodians of public discourse?
  • What are the cultural, political, and ethical implications of on-demand platform economies as new forms and sites of semi-automated, globally distributed, digital labor?
  • What are the sociocultural factors shaping the development, structure, and activities of 'tech for good' initiatives?


For more information about the Social Media Collective, and a list of past interns, visit the About page of our blog (
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