Tamar Mitts is an Assistant Professor at the School of International and Public Affairs and a Faculty Member at the Data Science Institute at Columbia University. Her research advances the study of conflict, contentious politics, and security policy in the digital era, with a focus on political behavior and extremism on social media platforms.
Much of her current research examines the behavior of extremist groups on social media. She studies how online engagement with extremist content is shaped by events in the offline world, how terrorist propaganda radicalizes targeted audiences, and the way in which exposure to hate speech and disinformation shapes radicalization outcomes. These projects draw on new data on the online behavior of millions of users linked to extremist groups on various social media platforms.
Beyond extremism, her research examines how the new media environment can be manipulated to affect political behavior, and the role of media framing and social identity in mobilizing mass protest movements. In several projects focusing on right-wing populism, she studies how far-right politicians mobilize supporters on social media, how ‘alternative’ online platforms serve as vehicles for the spread of misinformation, and the way in which race and ethnicity influence public perceptions, as well as the outcomes of nonviolent protests.
Mitts’s work has been published, or is forthcoming, in top political science journals, including the American Political Science Review, International Organization, the Journal of Politics, and the Journal of Economic Perspectives, among other outlets. She holds an M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University and a B.A., summa cum laude, in Politics with Highest Honors from New York University.