WTMC PhD Workshop ‘Datafying non-humans’ 21-23 April 2021 (online)

Date: April 21, 2021 until April 23, 2021
Time: 12:00 AM - 11:59 PM

Over the last forty years, scientific endeavours and related policy initiatives have been strongly shaped by datafication. Many of these current endeavours, whether space exploration, genomics or addressing climate change rely on complex digital objects, formed by global networks of data flow. For example, the scientific study of the world’s floral and faunal diversity has undergone a major transformation: once the study of naturalists and biologists who only booked slow progress in cataloguing all life on earth, it has gradually turned into a rapidly advancing and data-intensive field which promises to offer solutions to major societal challenges of the twentieth century, including food security, biodiversity loss, and climate change. By approaching such datafication practices from an STS perspective, this workshop examines social, cultural and political aspects that have shaped the digital production of knowledge related to scientific research since the second half of the twentieth century. This is also the occasion to reflect on how data and the digital are implicated in re-drawing human/non-human distinctions. Moreover, the workshop invites participants to think about how a reflexive understanding of the datafication of non-humans (including nature) could enable society and policy makers to develop better, more accountable and realistic approaches, on a local, regional and a global scale.

Guest lecturers in this workshop:

  • Tahani Nadim, Professor of Socio-Cultural Anthropology, Department for European Ethnology, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Museum for Natural History Berlin, Germany
  • Clemens Driessen, Associate professor of Cultural Geography, Department of Environmental Sciences, Wageningen University, the Netherlands
  • Claire Waterton, Professor of Sociology, Lancaster University, UK
  • Sharif Islam, Data architect, Naturalis Biodiversity Center, Leiden, The Netherlands
  • David Ribes, Associate professor, Human Centered Design & Engineering University of Washington, USA
  • Christine Borgman, Distinguished Research Professor and Presidential Chair Emerita Information
    Studies University of California, Los Angeles, USA


WTMC PhD candidates can register for free.

For external PhD candidates a participation fee of € 695 is charged.

After their acceptance, external participants will receive an email with an invoice and online-payment request and receipt. To participate, you must pay the fee via the online payment request. Registration to the workshop is final after the advance payment has been received by WTMC.

If you have any content-related questions regarding this workshop, please feel free to contact the training coordinators Anne Beaulieu: j.a.beaulieu@rug.nl or Andreas Weber: a.weber@utwente.nl

For practical questions please contact Elize Schiweck: e.schiweck@utwente.nl

Registration for this PhD Workshop has been closed. 

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