Eduardo Albrecht

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Dr Albrecht has investigated political protest patterns in Southern Europe, conducted fieldwork among North Korean defectors in East Asia, and studied connections between online behavior and social unrest in Sub-Saharan Africa. His research is situated at the crossroads of political anthropology, digital humanities, and international studies.

His work has contributed to projects funded by organizations such as the International Peace Institute, the National Research Foundation of Korea, the European Institute for Asian Studies, the World Bank, the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, the Japan International Cooperation Agency, and has presented at organizations such as the United Nations Development Program, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

SOAS, University of London 2010
Ph.D. Department of Anthropology and Sociology

SOAS, University of London 2001
M.A. Department of Anthropology and Sociology

John Cabot University, Rome 1999
B.A. Department of International Affairs

Dr Albrecht is currently working on a project that considers the ethics of artificial intelligence in political decision making processes, and its impact on state-citizen relations. He is also working with the United Nations University's Center for Policy Research investigating the challenges that rise from the use of predictive AI technologies in peacekeeping operations.

In parallel, Dr Albrecht is involved in applied ethnographic work that uses AI software specifically designed to predict future instances of political unrest. This mixed methodology uses natural language processing and machine learning to collect large quantities of online language data, which is then modeled alongside other types of data, including satellite imagery and econometric indicators, to predict future instances of such phenomena as electoral violence, labor action, ethnic clashes, and violent extremism. Simultaneously, ethnographic fieldwork is conducted with the social groups involved to constantly revise the models and better understand events. The main argument is that by co-calibrating algorithmic analyses with ethnographic experience it is possible to considerably expand the field through what he has termed “prosthetic ethnography” and to achieve statistically relevant predictive and explanatory capacity. 

Dr. Albrecht teaches both IRDP Capstone 1 & 2, where students work with the instructor to design a capstone project that draws upon knowledge and skills that the students have attained throughout their courses to explore a new topic of their interest. The capstone project provides students with the necessary research, argumentation, and writing/presentation skills for a career related to international relations.

He also teaches World Cultures, which is an introductory course to the anthropological and political aspects of cultural difference. A spectrum of issues concerning human origins, expansion, material relations, and regional/ethnic differences, are addressed.

Books

Forth. 2023 Political Automation: An Introduction to Driverless Government from Policing to Peacekeeping (under contract Oxford University Press).

2017 Alter-globalization in Southern Europe: Anatomy of a Social Movement, New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Articles

2019 The Relationship Between Influential Actors’ Language and Violence: A Kenyan Case Study Using Artificial Intelligence. Background Study, LSE-Oxford Commission on State Fragility, Growth and Development, London

2017 The Case of a Social Movement that Does Not Move: Alter-globalization in Southern Europe. Mediterranean Review, 9/3: 40-68.

2015 Embodying Progress: Aesthetic Surgery and Socioeconomic Change in South Korea. East Asian Science, Technology and Society (EASTS), Duke University Press, 9/3: 29-49.

2014 Democratization and Good Governance in Myanmar/Burma, with Amit Arora. Journal of Corruption Studies, 19/1: 211-234.

2014 A Review of the Social, Cultural, Political and Economic Dimensions of the Senkaku/Diaoyu Island Dispute, with Betty Chemier. Journal of Northeast Asian Cultures, 39/1: 491-514.

2014 A Review of the Chinese, Russian, US and EU Strategies in the Korean Peninsula from 2006-2012, Journal of Northeast Asian Studies, 71/1: 323-346.

2013 Antonio Gramsci’s Political Philosophy and European Integration: A Review of Competing Perspectives in Contemporary Italy. Mediterranean Review, 6/2: 91-113.

2013 North Korea & the UN Security Council: Action, Reaction, Trust, and Mistrust. Policy paper, International Peace Institute, New York.

2012 Italian Labor Market Reform: An Appraisal of the 2003 Biagi Law. Mediterranean Review, 5/1: 21-44.

2012 North Korea in the East Asian Puzzle: Anthropological Perspectives for EU policy Developments. Briefing paper, European Institute for Asian Studies, Brussels.

2011 Experiences of State, Family and Body amongst North Korean Defectors Living in Seoul. Journal of Northeast Asian Cultures, 26/1: 579-600.

2011 Aesthetic Surgery and Social Change in South Korea. Korean Cultural Anthropology, 44/2: 359-389.

2011 A Study in Anthropology: The Anti-globalization Movement and the City of Naples. Journal of Mediterranean Studies, 13/1: 121-155.

William F. Olson Chair in Civic and Cultural Studies 2021–22

LSE-Oxford Commission on State Fragility, Government of United Kingdom 2018

Korean Research Foundation, Pukyong National University 2010-2014

Italian Cultural Association, Rising South Civil Rights Organization 2002-2008