Academic Conference: “Living with Monsters? Social Implications of Algorithmic Phenomena, Hybrid Agency and the Performativity of Technology” (IFIP 8.2)

Dear All,

I am proud to be on the programme committee for one of my favourite academic conferences IFIP 8.2. The conference will be at San Francisco State University, December 11 & 12, 2018 with Lucy Suchman (Lancaster U.) & Paul Edwards (Stanford U. & U. of Michigan) at Keynotes.  I very much hope to see you there!

Submission Deadline: May 27, 2018

Website: http://2018conf.ifipwg82.org/

Our evolving digital worlds generate both hope and fears. Algorithms, using big data, identify suspicious credit card transactions and predict the spread of epidemics, but they also raise concerns about mass surveillance and systematically perpetuated biases. Social media platforms allow us to stay connected with family and friends, but they also commoditize relationships and produce new forms of sociality. While there is little agreement on the implications of digital technology for contemporary work and social life, there is a growing realization that information technologies are performative (MacKenzie 2006) in that they no longer merely represent the world, but also produce it. And given their growing interdependence, the ability to control any given technology is increasingly limited. Stock market flash crashes, induced by algorithmic trading, are highly visible examples of such algorithmic phenomena (Scott and Orlikowski 2014). Have the things we have made become out-of-control juggernauts? Are we living with monsters?

IFIP WG 8.2 has a distinguished history in shaping research agendas around information technology and organisation. For the 2018 working conference, we call for papers from scholars studying information technology and related practices to reflect on the worlds that we help create through our research, debates, and teaching. The metaphor of monsters is intended to stimulate a rethinking of our orientation by compelling us to consider whether, when and why our creations turn against us, and with what implications.

(Image CC – Kevin Dooley – with thanks!)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s