Thinking critically about and researching algorithms

@article{Kitchin2017ThinkingCA,
  title={Thinking critically about and researching algorithms},
  author={Rob Kitchin},
  journal={Information, Communication \& Society},
  year={2017},
  volume={20},
  pages={14 - 29}
}
  • R. Kitchin
  • Published 2017
  • Sociology
  • Information, Communication & Society
ABSTRACT More and more aspects of our everyday lives are being mediated, augmented, produced and regulated by software-enabled technologies. Software is fundamentally composed of algorithms: sets of defined steps structured to process instructions/data to produce an output. This paper synthesises and extends emerging critical thinking about algorithms and considers how best to research them in practice. Four main arguments are developed. First, there is a pressing need to focus critical and… Expand
Comparing scripts and scripting comparisons: toward a systematic analysis of technologically mediated influence
While it is generally accepted in Science and Technology Studies that technological artefacts have an impact on human practices, the question how this impact is achieved has been answeredExpand
The social life of Learning Analytics: cluster analysis and the ‘performance’ of algorithmic education
ABSTRACT This paper argues that methods used for the classification and measurement of online education are not neutral and objective, but involved in the creation of the educational realities theyExpand
Do Algorithms Shape Character? Considering Algorithmic Ethical Subjectivation
Moral critiques of computational algorithms seem divided between two paradigms. One seeks to demonstrate how an opaque and unruly algorithmic power violates moral values and harms users’ autonomy;Expand
Socio-Technical Design of Algorithms: Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency
Algorithms play increasingly critical roles these days. With the conceptualization of algorithms as a socio-technical system, this study investigates the algorithm initiatives in Korea in terms ofExpand
Towards a Digital Workerism: Workers’ Inquiry, Methods, and Technologies
Digital technology is playing an increasingly visible role in the organisation of many people’s work—as well as large parts of their lives more broadly. The concerns of emancipatory technologyExpand
Social gamers’ everyday (in)visibility tactics: playing within programmed constraints
ABSTRACT As continual scandals around internet data collection, manipulation and dissemination (the Snowden disclosures, the Facebook emotion contagion research and more recently, the CambridgeExpand
The power of relation-making: insights into the production and operation of digital school performance platforms in the US
ABSTRACT This contribution takes a critical perspective on digital school performance platforms (SPP), which today play a key role in US state education monitoring and accountability. Using examplesExpand
Datastructuring—Organizing and curating digital traces into action
Digital transformations and processes of “datafication” fundamentally reshape how information is produced, circulated and given meaning. In this article, we provide a concept of “datastructuring”Expand
The Over-Extended Mind? Pink Noise and the Ethics of Interaction-Dominant Systems
TLDR
It is argued that interaction-dominance as an emergent property of some human-cognitive artefact relations has important implications for understanding the attribution and distribution of causal and other forms of responsibility as well as agency relating to the actions of human-stochastic artefact couplings. Expand
Epistemology, methods and theories of communication in the Big Data Era: a critical panorama of social media research
This paper proposes a critical reflection on the epistemological, methodological and theoretical implications of the researches based on Big Data – especially on social media data – for theExpand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 82 REFERENCES
Power through the algorithm? Participatory web cultures and the technological unconscious
  • David Beer
  • Sociology, Computer Science
  • New Media Soc.
  • 2009
TLDR
This article situates Web 2.0 in the context of the broader transformations that are occurring in new media by drawing on the work of a number of leading writers who, in various ways, consider the implications of software ‘sinking’ into and ’sorting’ aspects of the authors' everyday lives. Expand
Unfolding mapping practices: a new epistemology for cartography
In recent years there has been a turn within cartographic theory from a representational to a processual understanding of mapping. Maps have been re-conceptualised as mappings that ceaselesslyExpand
Not just steering but weaving: Relevant knowledge and the craft of building policy capacity and coherence
The whole process of royal weaving is comprised—never to allow temperate natures to be separated from the brave, but to weave them together, like the warp and the woof, by common sentiments andExpand
Media Technologies: Essays on Communication, Materiality, and Society
In recent years, scholarship around media technologies has finally shed the assumption that these technologies are separate from and powerfully determining of social life, looking at them instead asExpand
Governance by algorithms
Algorithms are increasingly often cited as one of the fundamental shaping devices of our daily, immersed-in-information existence. Their importance is acknowledged, their performance scrutinised inExpand
Code/Space: Software and Everyday Life
After little more than half a century since its initial development, computer code is extensively and intimately woven into the fabric of our everyday lives. From the digital alarm clock that wakesExpand
The Performativity of Code
This article analyses a specific piece of computer code, the Linux operating system kernel, as an example of how technical operationality figures in contemporary culture. The analysis works at twoExpand
On Organizing Algorithms
This short paper acts as a comment on Totaro and Ninno's ‘The Concept of Algorithm as an Interpretative Key of Modern Rationality’ and also introduces some new avenues for exploring the organizationExpand
Deliberative, Agonistic, and Algorithmic Audiences: Journalism's Vision of its Public in an Age of Audience Transparency
Building on earlier empirical work in newsrooms, this paper contends that a fundamental transformation has occurred in journalists’ understanding of their audiences. A new level of responsiveness toExpand
Algorithmic Ideology: How Capitalist Society Shapes Search Engines
PREPRINT VERSION!!!; please cite journal article once it has been published! This article investigates how the “new spirit of capitalism” (Boltanski & Chiapello, 2007) gets inscribed in the fabric ofExpand
...
1
2
3
4
5
...