Materiality Matters: Struggles with Digital Technology and the (em)body/i(ed)
Mar
6
1:30pm 1:30pm

Materiality Matters: Struggles with Digital Technology and the (em)body/i(ed)

[W]e too would endorse the necessity for the theoretically inclined to develop diverse new ways of foregrounding materialities and ontologies of immanence [and] … radically question modern–postmodern splits or the academic division of labour according to which ‘raw material’ nature is the task of science and existential speculation is for the humanities…Yet we cannot help but wonder what happened to connectivity, power-imbued codependencies …and other similar concepts for the formative topologies of force and power that cause us to materialise
—Asberg, Thiele & Van der Tuin 2015, 147, 148-149)

From big data to digital games, social media to online activism, digital media to e-commerce, evolving digital technologies have gained prominence over the last two decades in humanities, arts and social science research. The Critical Methods in Technoculture Seminars bring together an international collaboration of emerging scholars to activate a research agenda mobilizing critical communications scholarship and to develop a nuanced approach to incipient digital research methods across academic and professional disciplines. 

In this seminar, we ask the question: what is materiality in the digital era? Today, terms such as artifact, object, sculpture, clothing, found material and monument are newly brought into question. How do we think about the way in which ‘cutting edge' technologies today shape the methods we use for artistic and academic inquiry? The relationship between materialism and artificiality, digital technologies and the body, are constantly renegotiated, not just by genre but also by gender. So are relations of force and power, including those engendered by intersections of race, sexuality, positionality and class with gender. What do we mean by artificial, virtual or real, anyway? And what happens to the relationship between aesthetics and method in this context? 

During this roundtable, NSCAD faculty and graduate students talk about what it means—or could mean—to take up new understandings of materiality and the new explorations of methods that these require. Featuring: Bruce Barber, David Clark, Gary Markle, Kim Morgan and [graduate students to be confirmed]. 

Presented by The Fourchettes and hosted by NSCAD University, this seminar is one of a series on Critical Methods in Technoculture funded by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. The seminars take place between September 2016 and March 2017 in Berlin (DE), Calgary, Halifax, Hamilton, Leicester (UK), London (UK), Los Angeles (US), Ottawa, Toronto. 

NSCAD Art Bar |1873 Granville Street | Monday, March 6, 2017 | 1:30 – 4 p.m. | Food and refreshments will be provided; to ensure we have enough, RSVP to sennah.yee@gmail.com

 

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Walking Matters: A Peripatetic Experience of The Halifax Explosion
Feb
17
3:00pm 3:00pm

Walking Matters: A Peripatetic Experience of The Halifax Explosion

Narratives in Space + Time Society is a creative research group based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the east coast of Canada. It facilitates projects involving intergenerational mobile media and walking practices to elicit stories and civic engagements in often unexpected ways, connecting and disrupting history, habit and the present. As an artist group, NiS+TS works together creatively and collegially through walking, looking, talking, documenting and sharing media. We do this walking work in order to ‘make spaces’ for ameliorating traditional power relationships (e.g. class, gender, race) in the neighbourhoods where we live, intervene and participate. One aim is to balance ‘real life’ and virtual experiences that can consider, challenge and restructure specific places of power and connectivity. By employing and analyzing co-creative opportunities arising from the group’s ongoing digital and mobility practices, NiS+TS is able to enact an explicitly critical and intersectional approach to collaboration, facilitated by artists, historians, architects and communications experts, including the expertise of citizens on the ground. The research-creation outputs of NiS+TS probe what happens when innovative new media and software-based storytelling, urban development consultations and a critical scrutiny of colonial histories of settlement and other traumas are brought into dialogue with today’s class, gender, race and related concerns. Our ongoing work is recognized provincially and nationally, including through scholarly and arts grants, as well as partners and supporters such as the City of Halifax, Nova Scotia Museums and Archives, the Department of Canadian Heritage, Nova Scotia 150 Forward Fund, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and more than 60 other collaborators. Over the last three years, a suite of public art walks has comprised the group’s current overarching project, “Walking the Debris Field: Public Geographies of the Halifax Explosion.” The project is creating content for two exhibitions and an array of walking-based activities for the Explosion’s centenary in 2017, the same year that marks Canada’s 150th anniversary as a nation-state. During this roundtable, members of NiS+TS and some of their collaborators talk about what it means—or could mean—to employ and deploy co-creation, digital technology, commissioning and making as a shared methodology.

Featuring:

Robert Bean (NSCAD University), Renée Gruszecki (historian), Brian Lilley (Dalhousie School of Architecture), Barbara Lounder (NSCAD University), Mary Elizabeth Luka (York University) from NiS+TS, and collaborators Peter Dykhuis (Director/Curator, Dalhousie Art Gallery); Angela Henderson (artist & educator); James Forren (Dalhousie School of Architecture); Catherine Martin (Mount Saint Vincent University Nancy’s Chair & filmmaker); Derek Reilly (Dalhousie University Faculty of Computer Science); Ren Thomas (Dalhousie School of Planning); and several students involved in the project.

Hosted at NSCAD University, supported by Dalhousie & York Universities, and presented by The Fourchettes (http://www.thefourchettes.net/), as part of a series of seminars on Critical Methods in Technoculture funded by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

NSCAD Art Bar | 1873 Granville Street | Friday, February 17, 2017 | 3 – 5 p.m. | Food and refreshments will be provided |To ensure we have enough, RSVP to sennah.yee@gmail.com

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The Politics of Process Interactive Panel | UNIVERSITY OF CALGARY
Jan
27
3:00pm 3:00pm

The Politics of Process Interactive Panel | UNIVERSITY OF CALGARY

The panel includes Dr. l Hogan (Ass’t Prof, Dept of CMF), Dr. Sheena Wilson (visiting from Faculty Saint-Jean, University of Alberta, and AnneMarie Dorland (Ph.D. Candidate, Dept of CMF). 

Dr. Mél Hogan - Assistant Professor of Environmental Media in the Communication, Media and Film Department at the University of Calgary. She is also currently working on a book about data centers. 

Dr. Sheena Wilson -  Dr. Sheena Wilson is an Associate Professor at the University of Alberta, where she is also co-director of the Petrocultures Research Group and Editor of Imaginations: Journal of Cross-Cultural Image Studies. Her research interests involve an interdisciplinary approach to studying visual and textual representations of gendered and other forms of marginalization within the context of global oil cultures. Her scholarly monograph in progress is called Feminist Energy Futures: Power Shift and Environmental Social Justice.

AnneMarie Dorland - AnneMarie Dorland is currently a PhD Candidate in the Department of Communication, Media and Film at the University of Calgary, where she is investigating how cultural producers and cultural industries can teach us about new uses and forms of ethnographic, practice based and participatory research. Her research tries to understand how designers learn, share and adapt forms of problem solving and 'design thinking' in their work, and how the institutional logics of both the studio space and the cultural industry impact their practice.

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Data and Power Issues: Navigating New Knowledge | UQAM
Nov
23
12:30pm12:30pm

Data and Power Issues: Navigating New Knowledge | UQAM

We are pleased to invite you to the bilingual lunch-seminar Data and power issues: Navigating new knowledge which will happen at UQAM, room J-1187 on Wednesday November 23 between from 12:30 to 2 PM. Organized by the research group The Fourchettes in collaboration with LabCMO and the Chaire de recherche UQAM sur les usages des technologies numériques et les mutations de la communication, this will be the occasion to discuss and deepen our understandings of the sociopolitical implications of online trace data and the knowledge that comes from it.

From big data to small data and thick data, social science research integrates an increasing number of methods of analysis related to the digital and virtual traces left by users in their online activities. Between clicks, comments, the proliferation of mobile technologies and surveillance practices, the infrastructure and ethical implications within which these data sets reside are often uncritically described rather than analysed. These flows of data are never really “raw” (Gitelman 2013). Rather, they are shaped and constructed by power relationships and reflect values embedded in their respective infrastructures and systems of distribution (Lupton 2015, Markham 2013). From this perspective, in what ways is “data” constituted of its own socio-political contexts and implications, and how do such contexts influence knowledge

You are invited to join the conversation. Four researchers will offer brief, opening presentations to generate an in-depth discussion about this and related questions. The researchers are:

Mary Elizabeth Luka, Banting Postdoctoral Fellow, Sensorium Centre for Digital Arts & Technology (York University, Toronto)

Jacqueline Wallace, Postdoctoral Fellow, Milieux Institute for Art, Culture and Technology (Concordia University, Montréal)

Florence Millerand, Professor in the Department of Social and Public Communication (UQAM), Co-director of LabCMO and Chaire de recherche UQAM sur les usages des technologies numériques et les mutations de la communication

Mélanie Millette, Professor in the Department of Social and Public Communication (UQAM)

RSVP : info@labcmo.ca

Info: cmo.uqam.ca 

 

Il nous fait plaisir de vous inviter au lunch-séminaire bilingue Données et enjeux de pouvoir : quels biais pour quelles connaissances? qui se tiendra à l’UQAM, local J-1187 le mercredi 23 novembre entre 12h30 et 14h. Organisé par le collectif The Fourchettes en collaboration avec le LabCMO et la Chaire de recherche UQAM sur les usages des technologies numériques et les mutations de la communication, l’activité visera à approfondir nos réflexions sur les implications socio-politiques des données et des connaissances qui en découlent.

Du big data au small et thick data, les recherches en sciences sociales intègrent de plus en plus des méthodes d’enquête liées aux traces laissées par les usagers dans leurs activités en ligne. Entre les clics, les commentaires, la multiplication des technologies mobiles et les pratiques de surveillance, la constitution et les implications éthiques de ces jeux de données restent souvent impensées. Sachant que les données ne sont jamais « brutes » (Gitelman 2013) et qu’elles sont façonnées, construites, qu’elles témoignent de valeurs et de rapports de force (Lupton 2015, Markham 2013), quelles sont les implications socio-politiques derrières la constitution des données et des connaissances qui en découlent?

Afin d’aborder cette question, quatre chercheures présenteront un court énoncé visant à ouvrir la conversation avec les participants, participantes. Ces chercheures sont :

Mary Elizabeth Luka, stagiaire post-doctorale et boursière Banting, Sensorium Centre for Digital Arts & Technology (York University, Toronto)

Jacqueline Wallace, stagiaire post-doctorale, Milieux Institute for Art, Culture and Technology (Concordia)

Florence Millerand, professeure au Département de communication sociale et publique (UQAM), codirectrice du LabCMO et directrice de la Chaire de recherche UQAM sur les usages des technologies numériques et les mutations de la communication

Mélanie Millette, professeure au Département de communication sociale et publique (UQAM)

Inscription : info@labcmo.ca

Info : cmo.uqam.ca

Au plaisir de vous y voir!

 

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Feminist Digital Research Methods Workshop | University of Leicester
Oct
14
1:00pm 1:00pm

Feminist Digital Research Methods Workshop | University of Leicester

The contemporary research environment prompts a number of new questions, challenges, and issues related to research design, methodology, and epistemology. Those whose research considers the Internet, networking technologies, digital media, or new forms of mediated connectivity must confront a rapidly changing set of practices related to the study of these phenomena. These range from high-volume quantitative big data methods to cultural analytics of visualizations to granular qualitative research that can account for the role of sociotechnical actors including algorithms and platform affordances. Those whose research focuses on more ‘traditional’ or ‘analogue’ media and practices are also rarely unaffected by increasing digitization of these forms. The speed of these changes necessitates critical analysis of the potential pitfalls and creation of best practices within the contemporary research environment. These are essential to ensure that we do not lose sight of the trees for the forest in a context that can fall into the trap of fetishizing technology and the size of the data set.

Participants will discuss how feminist digital research methods can shape such a critical intervention. How might a feminist approach afford an ethical, rigorous, and politically-engaged way of conducting research today? Speakers include faculty, visiting scholars, students, and members of the broader community who are often implicated in academic research.

This roundtable discussion is led by Alison Harvey and Mary Elizabeth Luka, sponsored by a grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Connections. Hosted by the Department of Media and Communication’s Gender Research Group in the Bankfield House Lecture Theatre at the University of Leicester.

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Creative Work in a Post | Brexit UK | Goldsmiths, University of London
Oct
12
11:00am11:00am

Creative Work in a Post | Brexit UK | Goldsmiths, University of London

The forthcoming departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union has created a culture of uncertainty related to the future of many creative and cultural organizations and their staff. Such organizations must find ways to forecast and potentially ameliorate the implications of the Brexit for their industries. Workers face potential challenges of reductions in mobility in Europe, even while these business pathways thrive on mobile transnational workforces. This preliminary working session draws together academic researchers and working professionals in creative and cultural organizations and initiatives related to creative work to critically discuss the potentialities offered by contemporary digital data gathering and analyses. Through these discussions, we aim to highlight possibilities for shaping policy and drawing on academic-industry partnerships across sectors to safeguard and strengthen conditions for creative work in a post-Brexit UK. 

This is an informal working session sponsored by Critical Methods in Technoculture Seminars (funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada), the University of Leicester Department of Media and Communication as part of their 50th anniversary celebrations, and hosted at Goldsmiths, University of London. Email us if you would like to attend.

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Bending the Rules | AoIR 2016 | Humboldt University
Oct
8
11:30am11:30am

Bending the Rules | AoIR 2016 | Humboldt University

Evolving digital technologies have necessitated the development of a rigorous set of methods for their analysis. Scholars globally seek to refine tools, techniques, and tactics for examining and understanding the cultural, social, economic, political and environmental entanglements between these forms and our everyday lives. 

Feminist digital research methods represent an opportunity to (re)frame the relevance of scholarly research in contemporary networked life by addressing power relationships in academia, epistemological choices, and analysis tools and techniques, not to mention in our very research objects. Drawing on feminist and equity commitments to engage with and substantiate intersecting points of view from various members of networked communities under study, this fishbowl aims to bring contemporary digital research methods to account. 

The discussion will be started by Alison Harvey (chair), Jessalyn Keller, Mary Elizabeth Luka, Mélanie Millette, Tamara Shepherd. If you are attending the 2016 Association of Internet Researchers conference, join us in FB-07, Humboldt University, on Saturday, October 8 from 11 am to 12:30 pm.

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Interventions in Digital Methods | University of Calgary
Sep
30
3:00pm 3:00pm

Interventions in Digital Methods | University of Calgary

Dr. Tamara Shepherd and Dr. Jessalynn Keller, with an introduction by M.A. students Carla McCutchin and Sheena Manabat, will characterize dominant trends in digital methods, critique those trends from an intersectional feminist perspective, and offer examples of the promises and pitfalls of researching messy digital cultures. 

Presented as the first in a SSHRC-funded series about Critical Methods in Technoculture Seminars and as part of the monthly seminar series hosted by the Department of Communication, Media and Film at the University of Calgary

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