The Institue for Information Policy conducts groundbreaking research and innovative programs on the social implications of information technology, with an emphasis on the potential of information technologies for improving democratic discourse, social responsibility and quality of life.
The IIP is co-housed in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications and the College of Information Sciences and Technology at Penn State.
Since its formation, the IIP has operated with co-directors. The current co-directors are Amit Schejter of the College of Communications/Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Krishna Jayakar of the College of Communications and Carleen Maitland of the College of Information Sciences and Technology. Richard Taylor of the University of Hawaii, Manoa and Jorge Schement of Rutgers University are Co-Directors Emeriti.
The IIP undertakes both research and programmatic activities (e.g., conferences) aimed at making a direct contribution to society (“public scholarship”) and to advancing the understanding of information technology processes and outcomes.
The IIP conducts its research and programs through generous support from a variety of sponsors, including the Ford Foundation, Google, The Media Democracy Fund, Verizon and AT&T, among others. Since its formation, the IIP has received approximately $2.33 million in external support, excluding in-kind contributions (see gifts and grants received from 1997 to 2017).
The IIP operates on the basis of teams of faculty and others as appropriate to implement particular projects. As a research center co-housed in the College of Communications and the College of Information Sciences and Technology, the IIP is also assigned graduate student assistants from both colleges for its activities. A graduate student currently serves as the Managing Editor of the Journal of Information Policy, published by the IIP. The IIP has regularly employed graduate students (and often undergraduates), mostly during the summer, and on occasion during the school year.