Contributor profile

Susan McGregor

Assistant Director | Tow Center for Digital Journalism Columbia Journalism School


Susan McGregor is Assistant Director of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism and Assistant Professor at Columbia Journalism School, where she helps supervise the dual-degree program in Journalism & Computer Science. She teaches primarily in areas of data-driven journalism and investigations, as well as algorithms and information visualization. McGregor's research interests lie principally in information security, privacy, censorship, and alternative forms of digital distribution. Prior to joining Columbia Journalism School in 2011, McGregor was the Senior Programmer on the News Graphics team at the Wall Street Journal Online.

McGregor was named a 2010 Gerald Loeb Award winner for her work on the the WSJ’s “What They Know” series, and a finalist for the Scripps Howard Foundation National Journalism Awards for Web Reporting in 2007. Her work has also been nominated for two Webby awards, in 2011 and 2015. She has published a range of papers in leading peer-reviewed security and privacy conferences exploring how these issues manifest in and impact the work of journalists. Her research and development work in this and related areas has received support from the National Science Foundation, the Knight Foundation, Google, and multiple schools and offices of Columbia University. She frequently collaborates with computer scientists on work relating to both algorithmic fairness and abusive speech online, and is currently writing a practical guide and reference book on information security for journalists and journalistic organizations.

In addition to her technical and academic work, McGregor is actively interested in how the arts can help stimulate critical thinking and introduce new perspectives around technology issues, occasionally creating small prototypes and installations. She holds a master’s degree in Educational Communication and Technology from NYU and a bachelor’s degree in Interactive Information Design from Harvard University.

Content by Susan

Privacy and data leaks

From the Snowden revelations to the Panama Papers, reporters and editors face complex decisions when it comes to reporting on leaked data.