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Samantha Thorne

Samantha Thorne graduated from the University of Utah with an honors BA in International Studies and a BS in Economics. A Truman Scholar, she will begin studies at Harvard Law School this fall.

Samantha is interested in the ethical and legal ramifications of AI and is passionate about the role of government and public policy in maximizing its benefits while mitigating its long-term risks. In her previous role as a correspondent, Samantha authored the inaugural US-China AI Tech Summit report and covered technology policy in Washington. DC, She worked for Australia’s leading telecommunications and technology company and conducted AI policy research while in Melbourne to start an interdisciplinary AI task force in the city.

Alissa and Samantha have teamed up. Their research as JURIST Digital Scholars will seek to understand the public's perception of the US Supreme Court. The news media play a critical role in shaping the public's knowledge of the court, but studies demonstrate that press coverage is oftentimes limited in scope and quality. Because JURIST serves as a unique non-mass media source of legal news, Samantha and Alissa hope to use the past two decades of its Supreme Court coverage to gauge trends in reporting and reader interest in and engagement with articles related to the court. Using natural language processing methods, they will investigate changes in Supreme Court coverage in the following areas: case salience, coverage language in reference to partisanship and ‘game-frame,’ and reader engagement. The final product will be a digital visual essay that relies on a combination of data visualizations and written analysis to inform legal scholars, professionals, and members of the public of their findings.

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