Mathieu O'Neil

Associate Professor of Communication

Accepting PhD Students

20042022

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Biography

Mathieu is Associate Professor of Communication at the University of Canberra’s News & Media Research Centre, where he leads the Critical Conversations Lab. Mathieu’s research focuses on the affordances of commons-based peer production such as free and open source software and Wikipedia. He is currently investigating how Wikipedia can assist in generating civic online reasoning and best fact-checking practice in three ACT schools (Co-developing a new approach to media literacy in the attention economy, ACT Education Directorate-UC, Affiliated Schools Research Program, 2021-2022). He also leads an international team researching the organisational and public policy implications of the co-production of free and open source software (Mapping the co-production of digital infrastructure by peer projects and firms, Sloan and Ford Foundations, Critical Digital Infrastructure Fund, 2019-2020). Mathieu has played a key role in developing the field of peer production studies by founding and editing the peer-reviewed Journal of Peer Production (2011-2021), by editing the Handbook of Peer Production (Wiley-Blackwell Handbooks in Communication and Media, 2021), and by founding an international think tank, the Digital Commons Policy Council, in 2021.

Mathieu has also made significant contributions to the development of innovative online research methods and concepts, most recently thanks to an international project in which he is developing heuristics to detect online echo chambers (Bots Building Bridges (3B): Theoretical, Empirical, and Technological Foundations for Systems that Monitor and Support Political Deliberation Online, Volkswagen Foundation, Artificial Intelligence and the Society of the Future, 2021-2024). Mathieu is a founding member of the Virtual Observatory for the Study of Online Networks (VOSON), a world leader in web science and big data analytics located in the Australian National University, where Mathieu is Honorary Associate Professor of Sociology. Mathieu’s research on the adoption of innovation and the diffusion of health misinformation in the online environment brings together analytical frameworks such as social network analysis, actor-network theory and the sociologies of fields and controversies. The quality of this work was recognised when Mathieu and his co-author Robert Ackland were awarded the 2012 Communication, Information Technologies, and Media Sociology (CITAMS) section of the American Sociological Association Paper Award, which recognises an ‘outstanding published paper or book chapter related to the sociology of communications or the sociology of information technology.’ Mathieu and Rob are the sole recipients of the CITAMS Paper Award outside North America.

Mathieu's research has been published in leading peer-reviewed journals such as Social Networks, Information, Communication & Society, Réseaux, New Media and Society, the International Journal of Communication, and Organization Studies, amongst others. He previously held academic appointments at the Université Stendhal - Grenoble 3, the Australian National University and the Université Paris Sorbonne. He has also worked as a magazine editor and exhibition curator in Singapore, and as a researcher for the Australian Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy.

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