Street-Level Algorithms: A Theory at the Gaps Between Policy and Decisions

@article{Alkhatib2019StreetLevelAA,
  title={Street-Level Algorithms: A Theory at the Gaps Between Policy and Decisions},
  author={Ali Alkhatib and Michael S. Bernstein},
  journal={Proceedings of the 2019 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems},
  year={2019}
}
Errors and biases are earning algorithms increasingly malignant reputations in society. A central challenge is that algorithms must bridge the gap between high-level policy and on-the-ground decisions, making inferences in novel situations where the policy or training data do not readily apply. In this paper, we draw on the theory of street-level bureaucracies, how human bureaucrats such as police and judges interpret policy to make on-the-ground decisions. We present by analogy a theory of… 

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