The Co-Production of Knowledge: Social Media, STS and ...
Wednesday 18 July 2012, 9.00AM
Speaker: Confirmed plenary speakers include:
Geof Bowker, University of California Irvine,
Leah Lievrouw, UCLA
Adrian MacKenzie, Cesagen, University of Lancaster,
Rob Procter, e-Research Centre, University of Manchester
Robin Williams, ISSTI, Edinburgh
Sally Wyatt, e-Humanities Programme, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences
Recordings of the Keynote speakers
This three-day symposium (18-20 July 2012) is intended to explore the intersection between these two areas of inquiry, with a specific focus on how Web 2.0 is both generative and challenging of different forms of knowledge production and the authority it commands. Questions related to co-production, citizen science, the power of data algorithms and metrics to shape or bypass human agency, and the possibility of participatory forms of surveillance are just some of the issues that are raised. Conference Programme 2012 (PDF , 2,002kb)
This conference is intended to bring together leading scholars in the fields of STS, communication and social media analysis, and the history and philosophy of science to critically explore these issues.
The user-centred and mass-collaboration characteristics of social media platforms have a clear affinity with recent STS models of the co-construction of technologies. Notions such as ‘prosumerism’ have been used to describe this blurring of the relationship between the consumer and producer. However, we need to ask whether this is to be seen as co-construction or primarily a re-engineering of labour relations and the locus of production? We also need to ask whether the ubiquity extends across all social media for all types of content. In other words, are new forms of expertise being inscribed, or are old knowledge hierarchies being reinforced?
- STS challenges the traditional perception of scientific ‘discovery’ and technological advancement, to demonstrate the co-production of claims to knowledge and the different forms and assemblages of knowledge this involves: how does this map onto commentaries on the importance of lay knowledge and ‘citizen science’ found in Web 2.0 as individuals and groups distribute ideas and information across their social networks? Could this provide a new impetus for ‘public interest science’?
- How do the same issues relate to the social sciences themselves: how might Web 2.0 provide opportunities for new forms of data and data analytics (for example, as ‘virtual knowledge’ via crowdsourcing, real-time data streaming, by-product data etc) and in what ways do these challenge conventional social science by opening up questions about what data itself constitutes and what order of being it represents?
- How might lay, amateur knowledge be mobilised as ‘citizen science’ and what warrant, authorisation and location in established science might it secure? How might the contribution of Web 2.0 science platforms differ from the amateur societies of the 19th and 20th centuries?
- It has been claimed that algorithms and code play an increasingly powerful part in shaping and constituting everyday life, it has even been claimed that algorithms are creating new rules and power structures that unknowingly come to restructure social hierarchies and divisions. How, for example, do algorithms make decisions for us? How do algorithms bypass or re-craft human agency? What are the implications of this? Exactly how do algorithms, code and metrics shape everyday life and access to knowledge?
- Do the open source platforms and social media tools of Web 2.0 come into tension with the international standardisation and codification of global ICT infrastructures and local and global knowledge infrastructures?
- Finally, the more celebratory characterisations of social media emanating from the marketing world typically lack a critical focus: can social media and STS analyses build a political economy of Web 2.0 to provide such a focus, by explicitly addressing issues of participatory surveillance, exclusion and control
Papers are invited that explore these broad questions around a number of possible themes, including:
- The boundaries and future of social media as a medium of knowledge creation, dissemination, and regulation
- The co-production of knowledge via Web 2.0 platforms
- Knowledge, expertise and disruptive/disrupted authority
Capturing social media: the commercial/political exploitation by or empowering of Web 2.0
Ownership, dissemination and use of scientific knowledge
E-governance and the regulation of knowledge within social media
National practices and global opportunities
Novel forms of knowledge creation through group processes, archiving, digitization etc.
Public and visible science
Scientific controversies online
This conference is intended to bring together some of the leading scholars in the fields of STS, Communication and Social Media analysis, and the history and philosophy of science to critically explore these issues.
Conference organising committee:
David Beer, Darren Reed, Mike Hardey, Brian Loader, Sarah Shrive-Morrison, Andrew Webster, Robin Williams, Sally Wyatt
Please note that this is a self-financed conference. Everybody attending the conference therefore needs to pay a registration fee. People who will be presenting a paper can register at a discounted rate. The Registration Fee payments contribute towards the cost of the production of the programme and administration of the conference, the hire of the venue and AV equipment, plenary sessions, lunch and refreshments.
Registration Fees (until 31 May 2012)
Registration Fees (after 31 May 2012 + £50)
Full* Speakers/Chairs £150
Full Speakers Concessionary Fee (students, unwaged and retired) £80
Full* non-Speakers Fee £175
Full non-Speakers Concessionary Fee (students, unwaged and retired) £95
Day Speakers Fee £80
Day non-Speakers £95
Conference Dinner £28
*Covering 3 days of the conference
Available via the secure 'online store' http://store.york.ac.uk/browse/product.asp?catid=258&modid=1&compid=1 *
* Please note. To book a meal at this event you need to close the new window and then repeat the process from here.
Campus Accommodation (PDF , 150kb)
Local Guest Houses (PDF , 217kb)
Recommended Hotels in York (PDF , 51kb)
Maps and Location
The conference is taking place on Heslington East Campus (new build) and main accommodation is a short walk or University bus ride away on Heslington West (see here)
Staying on in York
Terms and Conditions
1. All registrations must be received by 4 July 2012
2. Please note that the University of York cannot accept payments by Diner, Switch, Eurocard or American Express, Postal Orders and cheques drawn on a foreign bank.
3. Cancellation policy - on or before the 20 June 2012 full refund excluding admin fee of £25. After 20 June there will be no refunds.
Location: Ron Cooke Hub (Heslington East) University of York, UK
Admission: By registration