Sinan Aral
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Sinan's research examines the role of information and information technology in the productivity and performance of firms. Specifically, his research follows three streams:

The first stream measures how information flows and IT use impact the productivity of information workers, who now account for over 60 percent of the labor force and nearly 70 percent of the GDP of the United States. This research aims to understand the dynamics of social networks and how they impact the diffusion of information and knowledge; and measures the impact of IT use, IT skills and information flows on multitasking behavior, project duration, and individual and group productivity in information intensive organizations.

The second research stream measures the impact of firm-level IT investments on productivity and business value. This work examines how investments in IT capital, complementary intangible assets, organizational restructuring, and regional economic context impact firms’ productivity and performance. The aim of this stream is to understand how firms can achieve greater business value from their IT investments.

The third stream examines the business value of online social networks. This work examines how information and influence diffuse online and how online social networks influence demand patterns, usage behavior, word-of-mouth advertising, and referral marketing.

How does information diffuse through networks? How do individuals access different types of information in complex network topologies? What is the economic value of information distributed across a network? These questions are fundamental to our understanding of what makes knowledge workers productive, what makes word-of-mouth advertising effective, and what makes information and knowledge economically valuable.

His work has been published in leading journals such as Organization Science and the Sloan Management Review, has been mentioned in popular press outlets such as the Economist, the New York Times and CIO Magazine, and has won several best paper awards. He currently serves on the advisory board of the Institute for Innovation & Information Productivity (IIIP), a collaboration of industry and academia committed to understanding productivity in the information age. Prior to MIT, Sinan was a Fulbright Scholar, and worked as the assistant to the director of the Department of Southern Mediterranean Relations at the European Commission in Brussels and as a technology consultant for several Fortune 1000 firms. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Northwestern University and holds masters degrees in Information Systems and Technology policy from the London School of Economics and Harvard University respectively.


flag Content and Causality in Influence Networks
as author at  5th International AAAI Conference on Weblogs and Social Media (ICWSM), Barcelona 2011,