Bailey Flanigan Presents Her Work on Selective Fair Citizen Assemblies

Speaker: Bailey Flanigan , Harvard University

Date: Friday, October 27, 2023

Time: 12:30 PM to 2:15 PM Note: all times are in the Eastern Time Zone

Public: Yes

Location: 32-D507

Event Type: Seminar

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Host: Shuvom Sadhuka, CSAIL MIT

Contact: Amanda Abrams,

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Reminder Subject: TALK: Selective Fair Citizen Assemblies by Bailey Flanigan

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Title: Selective Fair Citizen Assemblies

Abstract: In a citizens' assembly, a panel of randomly-chosen citizens convenes to deliberate on a policy issue. As citizens' assemblies continue to grow in influence globally, we face increasing concerns about people manipulating the selection algorithms used to choose assembly participants. This is a concern because these algorithms must satisfy representation constraints according to volunteers' self-reported features; thus, an individual could misreport these features to increase their chance of being selected, decrease someone else's, and/or gain panel seats for their group.

In our paper, Manipulation-Robust Citizens' Assembly Selection, we study whether one can limit incentives for such manipulation by simply recruiting more volunteers -- a simple solution that is deployable in practice. Strikingly, we show both theoretically and empirically that the two SOTA selection algorithms - one of which is widely used - are highly manipulable, no matter the number of volunteers. We then propose a new algorithm and show that its manipulability declines at an optimal rate as the pool grows. Along the way, we will explore how to achieve additional desiderata like fairness alongside limited manipulability.

Food will be provided.

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Created by Amanda Abrams Email at Tuesday, October 24, 2023 at 4:43 PM.