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What the A-level debacle teaches us about algorithms and government

There are four key lessons about decision-making and redress

By Jack Maxwell, Joe Tomlinson  

Students protest the government's handling of their exam results. photo: Isabel Infantes/EMPICS Entertainment

In the face of overwhelming public pressure and looming legal action, the government last week scrapped its algorithm for calculating A-level grades. This resolved pressing concerns about the algorithm’s accuracy and fairness, even if it also created fresh problems for students and universities. But algorithms will continue to play a growing role in public sector decision-making in the UK, across almost all areas and levels of government. It is therefore essential to learn the lessons of…

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