Each year a small portion of AoIR conference fees go toward several travel scholarships for junior scholars to attend the conference. We want to recognize our scholarship recipients and share with you a little bit about them and their research interests.
Where are you from?
I’m from Israel, a PhD student at the Federmann School of Public Policy and Governance, Hebrew University of Jerusaelm.
In addition I work as Director of Research at the Strategy and Israeli Ministry of Economy and Industry.
What is your current area of study?
In my PhD project I study the values and political attitudes of high-tech employees. This part of the population holds large – and growing – social, economic, political and technological power. It is thus of high importance and scholarly interest to understand better their motivating values and political ideologies.
Describe the research you will present at AoIR2023.
The title of my presentation is: “THE HIGH-TECH ELITE? ASSESSING VALUE PRIORITIES OF TECH WORKERS USING THE EUROPEAN SOCIAL SURVEY 2012-2020” (co-authored with Dr. Dmitry Esptein, my PhD advisor)
In this paper, we leverage a large scale survey data (ESS) which measures on one hand values, using the widely used Schwartz’s values theory, and on the other hand, occupational affiliation, using standardized and high-resolution classification. This allows it to capture values of tech employees, compare them to other occupational elites (e.g. managers, professionals) and even distinguish between developers and non-developers within the tech workers group.
We find that overall tech workers espouse values that are more liberal and individualistic than the general population but similar to other occupational elites – so they are different but not as unique as sometimes suggested. However, we show they have peculiar ambivalence with regards to prosociality – they value in-group prosociality less than the average and out-group prosociality more than the average (which resonates with universalist flavor of Silicon Valley’s slogan of “trying to make the world a better place”). Finally, we find that developers – the core and probably more influential sub-group of tech workers – are more extreme in their value orientations than non-developers.
Beyond the novelty of some of these findings, they also corroborate findings from earlier studies. However, even for the latter we contribute to their generalizability , as they were usually based on small-N and US samples and without a framework that allowed for comparison between occupational classes. By using a large-N, non-US sample and common standards of values and occupation we complement this lacuna.
Have you presented at AoIR in the past? If so, what was your experience? If #AoIR2023 in Philadelphia is your first AoIR conference, what made you choose this conference? What do you expect from it?
This is my first time to AoIR. Together with my advisor and co-author Dmitry, we thought the focus of this conference on the inter-linkages between technology and society would be the right audience for the paper. I also look forward to others’ presentations in the conference, that would definitely enrich my understanding of these linkages and contribute to my thinking about my PhD project.