Center: eGovlab

Project leader: Oxana Casu

Project coordinator: Vasilis Koulolias

Co-inform

Co-inform is a co-financed project by Horizon 2020, European Union funding for Research and Innovation launched on 1st April 2018. The project is coordinated by eGovlab from Stockholm University’s Computer Science Department and the main partners are Cyprus University of Technology (Cyprus), Open University (UK), FactCheckNI (UK), University of Koblenz (Germany), Expert System Iberia (Spain), International Hellenic University (Greece), International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (Austria), Scytl Secure Electronic Voting S.A. (Spain). Co-Inform brings together academic researchers, technology companies and fact-checkers with aiming conducting interdisciplinary research and based on its results, initiate a bottom-up approach towards fighting online misinformation.

Co-Inform project Objectives

Our long-term objectives are:

  • To contribute towards shielding our society from online misinformation in the most efficient way.
  • To gather policymakers, fact-checkers and citizens in 3 different EU countries and research the best methods for resilience against misinformation on social media.
  • To create a technological tool, user-friendly but also in accordance with the feedback given from these 3 groups to make sure we respect the requirements of citizens.
  • To use co-creation methodology to make sure that all these crucial stakeholders are involved in improving the efficiency of misinformation-detection technology.
  • For this purpose our consortium of leading European universities and SMEs has gathered researchers from computer science, behaviour science and sociology that will provide the methodological tools for the project.

Our short-term objectives are:

  • To provide the European Union institutions with timely and accurate research based on stakeholders’ feedback that will prove useful in understanding and fighting effectively online misinformation.  
  • To contribute with our project in empowering misinformation-detection methods through citizens, fact-checkers and policymakers cooperation.
  • To understand the mechanisms, causes and consequences of the spread of online misinformation on immigrants and refugees through the conduct of workshops in three EU countries (Sweden, Greece and Austria).

The Co-Inform consortium decided to focus on this issue as it has become central to European politics and greatly influencing electoral outcomes. The immigration/refugee issue and the misconceptions that are often spread and amplified are playing a major role on elections.  Research conducted by the Co-Inform consortium can potentially provide relevant stakeholders with the answers to the questions on this serious phenomenon but most importantly with the adequate instruments to effectively counter it.