New Book on Big Data

Big Data is not a monolith

Cassidy Sugimoto, Hamid Ekbia and Michael Mattioli have published an edited volume titled “Big Data Is Not a Monolith”. The book (published by MIT Press) focuses on the myriad ways Big Data is affecting our lives. The book overview reads:

Big data is ubiquitous but heterogeneous. Big data can be used to tally clicks and traffic on web pages, find patterns in stock trades, track consumer preferences, identify linguistic correlations in large corpuses of texts. This book examines big data not as an undifferentiated whole but contextually, investigating the varied challenges posed by big data for health, science, law, commerce, and politics. Taken together, the chapters reveal a complex set of problems, practices, and policies. The advent of big data methodologies has challenged the theory-driven approach to scientific knowledge in favor of a data-driven one. Social media platforms and self-tracking tools change the way we see ourselves and others. The collection of data by corporations and government threatens privacy while promoting transparency. Meanwhile, politicians, policy makers, and ethicists are ill-prepared to deal with big data’s ramifications. The contributors look at big data’s effect on individuals as it exerts social control through monitoring, mining, and manipulation; big data and society, examining both its empowering and its constraining effects; big data and science, considering issues of data governance, provenance, reuse, and trust; and big data and organizations, discussing data responsibility, “data harm,” and decision making.

The book is available through MIT Press (link).

The Europe Lectures


Hamid Ekbia gave a series of talks in Germany, Austria and Denmark with themes ranging from heteromated labor, the political economy of AI and computing and drone warfare. Here is a list of the talks:

CROMI in CHI2016

CROMI has a paper in the Human-Computer Interaction (CHI 2016 ) conference that will take place from May 7-9, 2016 in San Jose, California. The paper is titled: Citizens for Science and Science for Citizens:  The View from Participatory Design. Here is the abstract:

The rise of citizen science (CS) as a form of public participation in scientific research has engaged many disciplines and communities. This paper makes a case for a unique contribution of the CHI community to the engagement with CS by contrasting two different approaches – one that puts citizens in the service of science, and one that engages them in the production of scientific knowledge. We use insights from our empirical study of CS projects to both support this distinction and highlight the limitations of existing citizen participation in most CS projects. Using Participatory Design as a lens, we explore the implications of limited participation in CS.


Conference: ‘Reconfiguring Global Space: The Geography, Politics, And Ethics Of Drone War”

IU Bloomington is hosting a conference titled ‘Reconfiguring Global Space: The Geography, Politics, And Ethics Of Drone War’ from July 13-17. The event which is sponsered by IU School of Global and International Studies and organized by IU faculty Hamid Ekbia and Majed Akhtar is organized into 4 session: ‘War and Policing’, ‘Technology’, ‘Culture and Affect’ and ‘Law, Policy and Ethics’. The conference program is available here.