1st Call For Papers (deadline: 15 March 2011)
University of Hertfordshire, UK, 17 June 2011
Part of the AHRC project The Construction of Personal Identities Online
Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are building a new habitat (infosphere) in which we are spending an increasing amount of time. So, how individuals construct and maintain their personal identities online (PIOs) is a problem of growing and pressing importance. Today, PIOs can be created and developed, as an ongoing work-in-progress, to provide experiential enrichment, expand, improve or even help to repair relationships with others and with the world, or enable imaginative projections (the "being in someone else's shoes" experience), thus fostering tolerance. However, PIOs can also be mis-constructed, stolen, "abused", or lead to psychologically or morally unhealthy lives, causing a loss of engagement with the actual world and real people. The construction of PIOs affects how individuals understand themselves and the groups, societies and cultures to which they belong, both online and offline. PIOs increasingly contribute to individuals' self-esteem, influence their life-styles, and affect their values, moral behaviours and ethical expectations. It is a phenomenon with enormous practical implications, and yet, crucially, individuals as well as groups seem to lack a clear, conceptual understanding of who they are in the infosphere and what it means to be an ethically responsible informational agent online. The workshop will address this gap in our philosophical understanding by addressing questions such as:
How does one go about constructing, developing and preserving a PIO?
Who am I online? How do I, as well as other people, define and re-identify myself online?
What is it like to be that particular me (instead of you, or another me with a different PIO), in a virtual environment?
Should one care about what happens to one's own PIO and how one (with his/her PIO) is perceived to behave online?
How do PIs online and offline feedback on each other? Do customisable, reproducible and disposable PIOs affect our understanding of our PI offline?
How are we to interpret cases of multiple PIOs, or cases in which someone's PIO may become more important than, or even incompatible with, his or her PI offline?
What is going to happen to our self-understanding when the online and offline realities become intertwined in an "onlife" continuum, and online and offline PIs have to be harmonised and negotiated?
Submissions: we welcome submissions addressing similar questions, or comparing and evaluating standard philosophical approaches to personal identity problems by analysing how far they may be extended to explain PIO, or seeking to complement the already available approaches. If in doubt, please feel free to contact Luciano Floridi (<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>email@example.com).
Deadline: please submit extended abstracts (between 1000 and 1500 words all included, preferably in MS Word format) for papers suitable for 40-minute presentations to Luciano Floridi (<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>email@example.com) by 15 March 2011.
Bursaries: a number of bursaries for graduate students presenting papers will be available, on a competitive basis, to contribute to travel and accommodation expenses. Please specify if you wish to apply for one.
Publication: successful submissions will be selected for two special issues, to be published one by <http://www.springer.com/computer/ai/journal/11023>Minds and Machines and the other by <http://www.springer.com/computer/swe/journal/10676>Ethics and Information Technology.
Series: the workshop is part of a series of meetings organized by the AHRC-funded project “The Construction of Personal Identities Online”. More information about the project is available here.
Call for panelists ‐
International Communication Association Annual Conference
May 26th ‐ 30th, 2011
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
‘Journalism and Surveillance’
Dr Gavin Smith (Department of Sociology, University of Sydney) and Professor Howard Tumber
(Co‐director, Centre for Law, Justice and Journalism, City University London)
PLEASE SEND ABSTRACTS (200 W0RDS) FOR CONSIDERATION BY WED 27TH OCT 2010 TO:
firstname.lastname@example.org and H.Tumber@city.ac.uk
Surveillance, that is, the strategical extraction and analysis of personal information and related exposure of social and material forms, has become a key feature of everyday life and social organization in the cultural fabrics of the northern hemisphere. Social institutions and human actors routinely utilize all manner of surveillance technologies and devices in order to accomplish organizational goals and satisfy personalized desires. The study of surveillance is now a globally dispersed, cross‐disciplinary enterprise and scholars researching this field have made significant advances in the empirical and theoretical understanding of how institutions and human agents interact and interrelate in increasingly virtual spaces and disembodied encounters, and the social implications thereof. One area of research demanding urgent critical attention is the role and function of surveillance both as modus operandi and as discursive object in the cultural activities and practices of media institutions. Investigative journalism increasingly deploys cutting edge surveillance techniques and undercover methods (e.g. phone taps, email intercepts, bugs, covet cameras etc.) in a bid to mine information and gather evidential imagery, whilst, simultaneously, other reporters produce politically charged accounts a propos an encroaching ‘Big Brother State’. Powerful elite groups strategically use the media as a space for justifying and legitimizing the deployment of particular surveillant technologies, whilst activist groups challenge these definitions through alternative articulations. Moreover, members of the public are increasingly responsibilized by journalists and media sites to contribute footage and any information held on a given story. Surveillance, it would seem, has now become a news producing device and a newsworthy story. Perhaps unsurprisingly, one might interpret the situational relationality between journalism and surveillance as being defined by ambivalence and complexity, and it is this issue which forms the basic exploratory rationale of this panel. The ‘Journalism and Surveillance’ panel aims to fill an important gap in current knowledge about surveillance and contemporary social reality, by inviting scholars to contribute empirically informed and theoretically sophisticated papers which explore the byzantine relationship between journalistic practice and surveillance production and critique. Some key thematic questions to be addressed might include:
• How have new information communication technologies altered the landscape and
practice of journalism?
• To what degree are journalists agents of surveillance?
• How and where do journalist learn surveillance techniques?
• How are such methods justified ethically, morally and legally?
• Does the exposure of powerful individuals and groups through journalistic procedures create a more democratic polity and transparent social structure?
• What protective resources are available for those who feel that their rights have been breached by investigative intervention?
• How effective is current legislation in terms of the governance and regulation of journalistic practice?
• How is surveillance represented and portrayed in journalist reportage?
• When and how did surveillance as a discursive topic become newsworthy?
• How do journalists critically reflect on the contradictions of their labour in relation to surveillance appropriation and critique?
• How might we conceptualize and explain social relationalities among journalists, newsworthy ‘subjects’, information systems, texts, legal frameworks and audiences?
It is anticipated that the papers included in the session will form part of a special edition collection, edited by Dr Smith and Professor Tumber, in the international journal, Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism.
Research Project: Security Impact Assessment Measure. A Decision Support System for Security Technologies
Further information available here: www.vub.ac.be/LSTS
Research Project: Security Impact Assessment Measure. A Decision Support System for Security Technologies
Further information available here: http://www.vub.ac.be/LSTS
Call for Papers for Research workshop
Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, September 8-9, 2011
Sponsored by The New Transparency: Surveillance and Social Sorting, Major Collaborative Research Initiative.
This workshop explores the social, political, legal and ethical implications of increased government and private sector surveillance in the wake of 9/11. Surveillance practices are increasingly viewed as the dominant organizing principle to understand national security practices in the post-9/11 environment. To protect against terrorism and other crimes, governments around the world have enthusiastically embraced surveillance measures–-CCTV cameras in public spaces, national identification cards, increased border scrutiny, accessing personal information collected by the private sector, and so on. The rise in state-sponsored surveillance has been accompanied by other technological and social developments, including the self-revelation of personal lives on social networks such as Facebook, to which police and security agencies have access under certain conditions. In the context of the growing emphasis placed on national security, the expansion of surveillance and government control over digital personal information may have led to a corresponding diminution of important civil liberties, including the right to maintain private lives online, the right to move freely within countries and across borders, and the right to be free from racial, ethnic or religious discrimination (profiling). This workshop will assess the effects of post-9/11 surveillance, using socio-legal, political and other criteria.
Workshop papers will focus on ways that post-9/11 surveillance practices (which may of course be embedded in earlier developments) are challenging civil liberties, privacy and human rights as well as offering ways to enhance democratic practices. Some illustrative examples of papers include:
The conference organizers are Arthur Cockfield, Queen's Faculty of Law, Kevin Haggerty, University of Alberta Dept. of Sociology, David Lyon, Queen's Dept. of Sociology, and Valerie Steeves, University of Ottawa Dept. of Criminology.
Please forward abstracts for consideration to Joan Sharpe (email@example.com) before December 17, 2010. Authors will be notified of accepted panel papers by January 15, 2011. Some funds are available through the New Transparency project for those who otherwise cannot obtain support for travel and accommodation through their universities or other employers. Full research papers (4,000 to 6,000 words) due on July 1, 2011.
Selected papers from the workshop will ultimately be published in an edited collection (publisher to be determined).
In addition to the academic conference in Kingston, there will be a related public event in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on Wednesday, September 7, 2011. A panel of prominent speakers, including Maher Arar, the dual Canadian/Syrian citizen who was the subject of the Canadian government's Arar Inquiry, and Alex Neve, the Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada, will present their thoughts on national security and surveillance policies ten years after 9/11. Conference participants may wish to attend this public event as well.
Thank you for sharing this call with other faculty and graduate students.