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.
I’m pleased to announce a new research project exploring the tensions between open data, data protection and privacy. The project is an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Institute for Information Law (IVIR) and the Digital Methods Initiative (DMI) at the University of Amsterdam. It is funded by the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology.
I’m involved in the project as an issue expert on open data (through my work as Director of Policy and Research at Open Knowledge), as well as as an Associate Researcher at the Digital Methods Initiative.
Inspired by a social media post from the historian Richard Drayton comparing fatalities from crossing the Berlin Wall and the US-Mexico border, I decided to have a quick look into the numbers and created this quick chart using Infogram.
Starting with Wikipedia articles on deaths from crossing the Berlin Wall and the US-Mexico border, the data was largely sourced from estimates from the Centre for Contemporary History in Potsdam (ZZF), the United States Border Patrol, the Mexican Government as well as via this report from the International Organization for Migration in Geneva.
The following piece is cross-posted from LSE Review of Books.
Open Access and the Humanities: Contexts, Controversies and the Future. Martin Eve. Cambridge University Press. 2014.
The dream of “universal access to all knowledge” (as the Internet Archive puts it) is, of course, not unique to our age. Aspirations to enable ever more people to partake in the fruits of human knowledge evolve in tandem with the practises, epistemologies and mythologies of the day – from magical and mathematical languages to universal library catalogues, hubristically epic corporate scanning empires to climate controlled bunkers for endangered books.
The advent of the internet has given this kind of dream a level of traction and tangibility that it may have lacked when the primary infrastructure of global knowledge transfer consisted of paper, pigeons, and postal systems. The spread of information technologies and communication networks have given rise to bright-eyed new narratives of sharing knowledge at what economists call “the marginal cost of reproduction”, which, in principle, could give everyone with an internet connection access at close to zero cost.
Slides from talk at Utrecht Data School: “An Epistemological Experiment: Issue Mapping, Data Journalism and the Public Understanding of Complex Issues”
Talk on Digital Methods and Data Journalism at the Data School, University of Utrecht, 27th November 2014
Further details about the talk are on the Data School’s website, and copied below.
The Utrecht Data School is proud to announce a guest lecture by Liliana Bounegru and Jonathan Gray. Their lecture will examine how new tools and methods from internet research and the social sciences might be used by digital journalists to improve coverage of complex issues. The talk is based on their work on this area as Fellows at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Columbia University.
The lecture will be held on Monday, 27 October 2014, 11.30 am to 12.30 am at Drift 21, Sweelinckzaal (room 0.05).
Slides and video for talk on “Mapping Issues with the Web: An Introduction to Digital Methods”, Columbia University
Following are the slides for the talk that Liliana Bounegru and I gave on “Mapping Issues with the Web: An Introduction to Digital Methods” at the Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Columbia University.
Leading sociologist Bruno Latour acted as respondent for the talk, and joined us for subsequent discussion.
A video recording from the talk is available here.