Chris Coward

Chris Coward is a Senior Principal Research Scientist at the University of Washington Information School, director of the Technology & Social Change Group, and co-founder of the Center for an Informed Public. Chris studies issues of information access, digital equity, information and digital literacy, misinformation, and civic engagement. His research is primarily applied, and he uses participatory methods when engaging with communities. Much of Chris’s research involves partnering with public libraries to co-create new programs around his areas of expertise.

Chris directs the Technology & Social Change Group (TASCHA), a research center he co-founded in 1999 (then Center for Internet Studies) as a social science response to the technological euphoria of the era. Under his leadership, TASCHA has grown in size and stature with projects spanning more than 50 countries. Chris approaches research development as a collaborative endeavor, working with donors and partners to co-design projects that result in applied knowledge. His efforts have influenced Microsoft’s Unlimited Potential Program, the Gates Foundation’s Global Libraries Program, and the International Telecommunication Union’s Digital Inclusion program, among others. In 2019 Chris was one of five principal investigators to co-found the Center for an Informed Public (CIP) with a mission to resist strategic misinformation, promote an informed society, and strengthen democratic discourse.

Chris is the author of more than 50 articles and conference proceedings. He holds a Master of Public Administration and a Master of Arts in International Studies, both from the University of Washington.