Algorithms and Decision-Making in the Public Sector

Annual Review of Law and Social Science, Vol. 17 (2021)

38 Pages Posted: 17 Jun 2021 Last revised: 1 Jul 2021

See all articles by Karen Levy

Karen Levy

Cornell University

Kyla Chasalow

University of Oxford

Sarah Riley

Cornell University - Cornell University

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 7, 2021

Abstract

This article surveys the use of algorithmic systems to support decision-making in the public sector. Governments adopt, procure, and use algorithmic systems to support their functions within several contexts—including criminal justice, education, and benefits provision—with important consequences for accountability, privacy, social inequity, and public participation in decision-making. We explore the social implications of municipal algorithmic systems across a variety of stages, including problem formulation, technology acquisition, deployment, and evaluation. We highlight several open questions that require further empirical research.

Keywords: algorithms, technology, government, policy, prediction, accountability

JEL Classification: O33, H7

Suggested Citation

Levy, Karen and Chasalow, Kyla and Riley, Sarah, Algorithms and Decision-Making in the Public Sector (June 7, 2021). Annual Review of Law and Social Science, Vol. 17 (2021), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3861841

Karen Levy (Contact Author)

Cornell University ( email )

Ithaca, NY 14853
United States

Kyla Chasalow

University of Oxford ( email )

Oxford
United Kingdom

Sarah Riley

Cornell University - Cornell University ( email )

Ithaca, NY
United States

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