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Sinan Aral    

David Austin Professor of Management at MIT

Sinan Aral is the David Austin Professor of Management at MIT and a founding partner at Manifest Capital. At MIT, he is a Professor of IT & Marketing, Professor in the Institute for Data, Systems and Society and co-leads MIT’s Initiative on the Digital Economy. He was the Chief Scientist at SocialAmp, one of the first social commerce analytics companies (until its sale to Merkle in 2012) and at Humin, a social platform that the Wall Street Journal called the first “Social Operating System” (until its sale to Tinder in 2016). He is currently on the Advisory Boards of the Alan Turing Institute, the British National Institute for Data Science and C6 Bank, the first all-digital bank of Brazil.

Aral was the Scholar-in-Residence at the New York Times in 2013 and has worked closely with Facebook, Twitter, WeChat, Yahoo, AirBnB,, Microsoft, IBM, Intel, Cisco, Oracle, SAP and many other leading Fortune 500 firms on realizing business value from big data analytics, social media and IT investments. Aral's research and teaching have won numerous awards including the Microsoft Faculty Fellowship, the PopTech Science Fellowship, an NSF CAREER Award, a Fulbright Scholarship, the Jamieson Award for Teaching Excellence (MIT Sloan’s highest teaching honor) and more than ten best paper awards conferred by his colleagues in research. In 2014, he was named one of the “World’s Top 40 Business School Professors Under 40” and, in 2018, became the youngest ever recipient of the Herbert Simon Award of Rajk László College in Budapest, Hungary. In 2018, Aral published what Altmetrics called the second most influential scientific publication of the year on the “Spread of False News Online,” on the cover of Science. He is also the author of the book "The Hype Machine," about how social media is disrupting our democracies, our economies and our public health. Aral is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Northwestern University, holds Master’s degrees from the London School of Economics and Harvard University and received his PhD from MIT. He enjoys cooking, skiing and telling jokes about his own cooking and skiing. His most recent hobby is learning from his young son.


Hitting the Books: How social media keeps us clicking
In The Hype Machine, MIT professor and entrepreneur Sinan Aral examines how some of the biggest social platforms in the world are built, how they operate, ...
Watch Debunking Election and Social Media Myths
With the upcoming presidential election there's been plenty of talk about social media's potential impact. MIT professor Sinan Aral takes a look at some common  ...
MIT professor wants to overhaul 'The Hype Machine' that powers social media
Sinan Aral: I started researching social media four years before Mark Zuckerberg founded Facebook. I have worked with all of the major social media platforms ...
Adapting To Social Media's Disruptions In 'The Hype Machine'
Sinan Aral is a professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he directs the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy. His book, "The Hype ...

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