Drawing on a comparison between data and photography that I made in an article for the Guardian several years ago, the talk focused on the development of critical literacies for data. In particular it argued for going beyond literacies with datasets, towards literacies around data infrastructures as socio-technical systems – including looking at questions of what is measured and how.
Talk on “How is Data Made? From Dataset Literacy to Data Infrastructure Literacy”, Web Science 2015, University of Oxford
Talk on “The Politics of Open Data: Past, Present and Future” at Data Power conference, University of Sheffield, 22nd June 2015
I’m giving a talk today on “The Politics of Open Data: Past, Present and Future” at the Data Power conference at the University of Sheffield. The slides and abstract for the talk are copied below.
On Wednesday I will give three papers at the Policy-Making in the Big Data Era conference at the University of Cambridge.
One paper will argue for a broadening of the politics of public information from a focus on the disclosure of datasets to the reshaping of data infrastructures. Another will look at the use and potential of network analysis and network mapping in digital journalism. The last one will look at ongoing empirical work to map the politics of open data on digital media, concluding with some reflections on the value of digital methods for policy research. Abstracts for all three papers are copied below.
Towards a New Politics of Public Information: From Opening Up Datasets to Reshaping Data Infrastructures?
Today I’m giving a working paper exploring a politics of public information that goes beyond a focus on the disclosure of datasets and looks towards interventions into the data infrastructures through which they are produced.
The paper was co-authored with Tim Davies at the University of Southampton and will be delivered at the Open Data Research Symposium as part of the 3rd International Open Government Data Conference in Ottawa. It draws on research undertaken as part of the EU H2020 funded ROUTE-TO-PA project.
Talk on “Using Data for Science Journalism” at International School of Science Journalism, 10th May 2015
In addition to the talk we ran a workshop on how to design data projects – which resulted in project briefs looking into drones, vaccination and the public reach of scientists.
I was invited to give a talk at a conference on the “Politics of Big Data” at King’s College London, which took place yesterday. I spoke about “Digital Transparency and the Politics of Open Data” and gave an overview of several ongoing research projects around these topics. The abstract for the talk was as follows, and the slides are included below.
In recent years the concept of open data has developed from being a niche idea at the margins of software development communities to playing a central role in global information policy. This paper draws on a combination of historical and empirical research to examine open data as a contested political concept that is continually reconfigured in response to shifting ideals, conceptions and practices of governance and democracy in different contexts. This includes work towards a “genealogy of open data”, as well as the findings from several research projects at the Digital Methods Initiative to map the politics of open data as an issue on digital media. It concludes with reflections on open data initiatives as sociotechnical assemblages and on emerging forms of intervention calling not just for the disclosure of information but for more fundamental changes in the composition of information infrastructures that organise collective life.
An edited version of the following piece appeared in The Guardian on 17th March 2015 with the title “Dutch student protests ignite movement against management of universities”. For other pieces in the Guardian see my contributor profile.
I’m pleased to announce a new research project to examine the impact of open budget data, undertaken as a collaboration between Open Knowledge and the Digital Methods Initiative at the University of Amsterdam, supported by the Global Initiative for Financial Transparency (GIFT).
The project will include an empirical mapping of who is active around open budget data around the world, and what the main issues, opportunities and challenges are according to different actors. On the basis of this mapping it will provide a review of the various definitions and conceptions of open budget data, arguments for why it matters, best practises for publication and engagement, as well as applications and outcomes in different countries around the world.