Apryl Williams

Author | Public Scholar | Advocate

Apryl Williams, Ph.D. is Assistant Professor of Digital Studies and Communication at the University of Michigan and Faculty Associate at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University. She is the author of Not My Type: Automating Sexual Racism in Online Dating, which has been featured on Mic.com and Mozilla Explains. Her research has appeared in The New York Times, Vogue, Wired, Buzzfeed News, and Time Magazine, among others. Her work has been supported by grants and fellowships from Google, the Mozilla Foundation, the Notre Dame IBM Technology Ethics Lab, the National Center for Institutional Diversity, and the Berkman Klein Center at Harvard University. 

Raised in San Antonio, Texas, Apryl earned her BA in American Studies and PhD in Sociology from Texas A&M University. With an interdisciplinary background, her work is influenced by black feminism, technology studies, critical internet studies, critical race theory, and critical media studies. She explores the lived black experience as it is shaped by algorithmic technocultures, the gendered black body, and race and racism as they manifest and evolve in our contemporary artificially fragmented society. As the co-founder of the Algorithmic Reparation Workshop, her current research uses the frame of algorithmic reparation(s) to call for more equitable, human centered, AI-driven and machine learning technologies. Accordingly, she is consulting with members of the United States Congress to develop a progressive legislative agenda for AI. She has also worked with Facebook, Instagram, Her, Data & Society, and Grindr to advocate for communities that have been historically underrepresented and underserved in the design and implementation of emergent technologies.