The Wall Street Journal: Facebook to give academics ‘full access’ to data for election studies

Facebook Inc. will give a newly formed group of academics “full access” to data on its 2.2 billion users for the purpose of identifying areas of research about the effects of social media on elections and democracy, the group said Wednesday.

Social Science One, a group formed earlier this year with backing from nonprofits including The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and The Charles Koch Foundation, said it would start accepting proposals from researchers for funding.

Facebook FB, -0.49%   is participating in the effort as part of what company officials have said is a renewed commitment to transparency and stamping out abuses on the platform.

In making the alliance, Facebook is continuing to work with outside researchers even as it grapples with the fallout from revelations that data-analytics firm Cambridge Analytica improperly accessed and retained user data. That data were initially gathered by a psychology professor at the University of Cambridge.

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

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