Curbing the spread of misinformation Insights, innovations, and interpretations from the Misinformation Solutions Forum

By Brian G. Southwell, Vanessa Boudewyns

Although many people now have access to more accumulated information than has ever been the case in human existence, we also now face a moment when the proliferation of misinformation, or false or inaccurate information, poses major challenges. In response to these challenges and to build collaboration across disciplines and expertise and a more effective community of learning and practice, the Rita Allen Foundation partnered with RTI International and the Aspen Institute along with Craig Newmark Philanthropies, Democracy Fund, and Burroughs Wellcome Fund to hold the Misinformation Solutions Forum in October 2018 at the Aspen Institute in Washington, DC. This forum brought together academic researchers, technology professionals, data scientists, journalists, educators, community leaders, funders and a set of graduate student fellows to explore promising ideas for curbing the spread of misinformation. We issued an open call for ideas to be featured in the forum that sought interventions focused on reducing behaviors that lead to the spread of misinformation or encouraging behaviors that can lead to the minimization of its influence. Interventions with technological, educational, and/or community-based components were encouraged, as were projects involving science communication, public health and diverse populations. A panel of expert judges assessed submissions through a blind review process; judges included representatives from the Rita Allen Foundation, as well as external institutions such as the Democracy Fund, the National Institutes of Health, the Poynter Institute, First Draft, and academic institutions. Authors developed the essays presented here based on both original submissions and the iterative collaboration process that ensued.


Southwell, B. G., & Boudewyns, V. (Eds.) (2018). Curbing the spread of misinformation: Insights, innovations, and interpretations from the Misinformation Solutions Forum. (RTI Press Publication No. CP-0008-1812). Research Triangle Park, NC: RTI Press.

© 2019 RTI International. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


Brian G. SouthwellBrian Southwell, PhD, is Director of the Science in the Public Sphere program at RTI International. He also teaches at Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and hosts a public radio show, The Measure of Everyday Life, for WNCU.

Vanessa BoudewynsVanessa Boudewyns, PhD, is a research scientist in the Science in the Public Sphere Research Program in RTI International’s Center for Communication Science.

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