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An Innovative Process for Finding Persuasive Arguments

Northeastern researchers are forming a spinout corporation based on software for identifying persuasive arguments from online text.

Published: 17th February 2022
An Innovative Process for Finding Persuasive Arguments
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Background

Companies, organizations, and political groups spend millions of dollars on persuasive campaigns. Field experts perform research to identify the potential arguments, for or against their position, who believes those arguments and which one’s people find most persuasive. This is a labor-intensive process which includes reading expert articles, conversations online (i.e., Twitter and Reddit threads).

Technology Overview

Researchers at Northeastern have developed an optimized method for identifying persuasive arguments. Rather than relying on an expensive, labor-intensive process to identify persuasive arguments, this new method pulls out large quantities of online text, identifies argumentative claims within the text and categorizes those arguments via topic modeling. An optimization algorithm then identifies the most persuasive argument, leveraging workers from Mechanical Turk. This process allows for a more extensive search of arguments, and for the efficient identification of the most persuasive argument.

Benefits

Enables searches that are:

  • More comprehensive
  • Faster and more efficient
  • More effective with greater reach

Applications

  • Political Campaigns
  • Advertising
  • Non-Profit Campaigns
  • Fundraising

Opportunity

  • Idea validation through customer discovery
  • Testing and validating MVP with pilot partner(s) 
Seeking
  • Development partner
  • Commercial partner
  • University spin out
  • Seeking investment