Category big data
In the digital world we are all developing countries: what Cambridge Analytica can tell us about limited statehood in the West
Watching the last week’s coverage of the trainwreck that is Cambridge Analytica’s involvement in the US elections, I’ve been struck principally by its ethnocentrity. (I research digital data and representation, so unfortunately I wasn’t surprised that our digital selves are, as Julie Cohen has put it, being farmed and essentially sold like cattle to the […]
Several times over the last year, researchers have written about the notion of data justice (Heeks and Renken here, Johnson here, and Dencik, Hintz and Cable here). They use this terminology to bring together important concerns about the way that data, and big data in particular, are affecting society, politics and development. These authors all […]
Data protection doesn’t engage with the collective level – is it time for change?
The Centre for Internet and Society recently released a groundbreaking paper on the practical, legal and ethical implications of using mobile phone data (CDRs, or Call Detail Records) in emergencies, with Liberia’s experience of the recent Ebola epidemic as the case study. Written by Sean Martin McDonald, the paper is brilliant, insightful and well researched, […]
In a recent paper, Dennis Broeders and I suggested that in the era of big data, we see rather than read. States have traditionally gathered data on their citizens in person, through survey methods, and have used those data to inform policymaking. James C Scott, in his book Seeing Like a State, refers to this […]
In a recent post on the World Economic Forum’s blog, Kate Crawford argues that two of the biggest challenges posed by big data are preserving due process and reducing power imbalances at a time when data scientists have an unprecedented ability to ‘classify and quantify human life’. In contrast to her focus on the human […]