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Maria Y. Rodriguez

Assistant Professor of Social Work
University at Buffalo School of Social Work


Computational methods in social work and social policy; social movements on social media; disinformation targeting Black and brown communities online

Portrait of Maria Y. Rodriguez, University at Buffalo social work and human services expert.

Maria Y. Rodriguez uses computational social science methods to address problems in social work, social policy and human services.

Specifically, Rodriguez’s research employs computational methods to extract insights from big data about how humans live their lives, with the goal of finding ways to leverage those insights to support marginalized communities. She founded the caretLAB, which works with technologists across different fields to develop, implement and evaluate large-scale interventions.

Rodriguez has investigated problems ranging from the foreclosure crisis to algorithmic decision-making in child welfare. She has also studied questions at the intersection of social media and social justice, with research on topics including feminist hashtags, social work’s social media response to COVID-19, social media platforms used by political extremists (such as Gab), and disinformation impacting Black and brown communities.


Maria Y. Rodriguez, PhD
Assistant Professor of Social Work
University at Buffalo School of Social Work