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On Monday, 9 November 2020, the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague (KABK), University College London and Camberwell College of Arts, London together with the Analysis and Research Department (DAO) of the Dutch Parliament will bring together experts from across technology, philosophy, politics, journalism and creative practice for a virtual symposium.

Issues addressed during three panel discussions, focus on algorithmic bias, surveillance technologies, fake news, online privacy rights, speech and text generation, search engine censoring and post-feminist computing. The panels have been organised as free–flowing dialogues.

Live broadcast via Youtube

Please register here for the symposium.

Online Programme

11:15 – 11:30 CET short welcome

11:30 – 13:00 CET

Law & Algorithmic Order
– Evelyn Austin (Bits of Freedom, Amsterdam)
– Bernard Keenan (Birkbeck University of London)
– Sophie Czich and Natalia Sliwinska (students MA Non Linear Narrative, KABK)

moderated by Niels Schrader with Sheena Calvert

14:00 – 15:45 CET, 8:00 – 9:45 EST

Algorithmic Control
– Richard Rogers (University of Amsterdam)
– Ezekiel Dixon-Román (University of Pennsylvania)
– Jack Poulson (Tech Inquiry, Toronto)
– Taya Reshetnik and Justine Corrijn (students MA Non Linear Narrative, KABK)

moderated by Sheena Calvert with Ramon Amaro

16:00 – 17:30 CET, 10:00 – 11:30 EST

Aesthetics & Resistance
– Helen Pritchard (Goldsmiths, University of London)
– André Brock (School of Literature, Media and Communication, Atlanta)
– Katie Pelikan Baselj and Marcin Liminowicz (students MA Non Linear Narrative, KABK)

moderated by Ramon Amaro, with Niels Schrader

17:30 – 17:45 CET wrap up by Ramon Amaro, Sheena Calvert and Niels Schrader

Biographies Speakers

Evelyn Austin, Bits of Freedom, Amsterdam
Evelyn Austin is the Executive Director of Bits of Freedom, the leading Dutch digital rights organisation. Bits of Freedom believes an open and just society is only possible when people can participate in public life without fear of repercussions. The right to privacy and the freedom of expression are at the core of this. Bits of Freedom fights for these fundamental rights by contributing to developing strong legislation, by championing the emancipatory potential of the internet, and by holding those in power to account. Austin is the co-founder of digital cultures platform The Hmm, and she sits on the advisory board of the Creative Industries Fund’s Digital Culture programme.

André Brock, School of Literature, Media and Communication, Atlanta
André Brock is an associate professor of media studies at Georgia Tech. He writes on Western technoculture, Black technoculture, and digital media. His scholarship examines Black and white representations in social media, videogames, weblogs, and other digital media. He has also published influential research on digital research methods. Brock’s first book, titled Distributed Blackness: African American Cybercultures, was published with NYU Press in 2020 and theorizes Black everyday lives mediated by networked technologies.

Ezekiel Dixon-Román, University of Pennsylvania
Ezekiel Dixon-Román is Associate Professor and Director of the Master of Science in Social Policy Programme, and Chair of the Data Analytics for Social Policy Certificate of the Masters of Science in Social Policy Programme at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the Penn Director of the Institute in Critical Quantitative, Computational, & Mixed Methodologies and founded and co-directs the initiative on culture, society, and critical policy studies. Dixon-Román is the author of the award-winning Inheriting Possibility: Social Reproduction and Quantification in Education (University of Minnesota Press, 2017) and is guest editor of the forthcoming Periscope in Social Text Online on ’Control Societies @30: Technopolitical Forces & Ontologies of Difference’.

Bernard Keenan, Birkbeck, University of London
Bernard Keenan is a lecturer in law at Birkbeck College, University of London. His teaching and research take a critical approach to the changing relationship between law and technology with a particular focus on security, and he is currently preparing a book on the media archaeology of communication surveillance. Keenan is a former immigration solicitor and has appeared on UK television and radio commenting on cryptography, secrecy in the courts, and immigration policy.

Jack Poulson, Tech Inquiry, Toronto
As one of Google’s Senior Research Scientists, Jack Poulson campaigned to hold the company to account for the design, development, and planned deployment of the Chinese search engine prototype Google Dragonfly. In addition to providing the ability to track Chinese citizens’ queries with their phone numbers, this would have censored information on human rights, political organizing, government officials, and even the Nobel Prize. After Poulson’s management chain refused to clarify Google’s red lines on international censorship and surveillance, he publicly resigned from the company. He then founded Tech Inquiry, a non-profit providing pro-bono algorithmic and policy consultation available to government officials and other non-profits. Tech Inquiry aims to make it easier for coders with a conscience to speak out inside their companies when they feel ethical boundaries are being crossed. Before joining Google, Poulson was an Assistant Professor of Mathematics at Stanford University.

Helen Pritchard, Goldsmiths, University of London
Helen Pritchard is the head of BSc Digital Arts Computing and a lecturer in Computational and Digital Arts at Goldsmiths, University of London. As an artist and geographer Pritchard’s interdisciplinary work brings together the fields of Computational Aesthetics, Geography, Design, and Feminist TechnoScience. Her practice includes both writing and making, and these two modes mutually inform each other in order to consider the impact of computational practices on engagement with environments. Central to her work is also the consideration of co-research, participation, and environmental practices. Recently, Pritchard co-edited Data Browser 06: Executing Practices (Autonomedia, 2017).

Richard Rogers, University of Amsterdam
Richard Rogers is Professor of New Media & Digital Culture at the University of Amsterdam. He is Director of the Digital Methods Initiative, one of Europe’s leading centres for Internet Studies that develops techniques for ‘natively digital’ research. Among other works, Rogers is author of Information Politics on the Web (MIT Press, 2004), awarded the best book of the year by the American Society of Information Science & Technology and Digital Methods (MIT Press, 2013), awarded Outstanding Book of the Year from the International Communication Association. Rogers is a three-time Ford Fellow and completed recently a study on ‘fake news’, commissioned by the Dutch Ministry of Internal Affairs.

More information to be published soon.