Antoinette Rouvroy: Algorithmic Governmentality – The Taming of Multitudes (1.9.14)

In the occasion of the Philosophy of the Web seminars in Lüneburg, we are happy to announce the intervention of Antoinette Rouvroy, who will talk about Algorithmic Govermentality. Previous interveners: Alexandre Monnin (FR), Antoine Hennion(FR), Harry Halpin(US), Greg Elmer(CA), Scott Lash(UK). Next Intervener: Tristan Garcia(FR): « What is something ? », 6 Octobre.

Abstract: Al­go­rith­mic go­vern­ment is a form of go­vern­ment fed with raw data (in­fra-per­so­nal si­gnals), af­fec­ting in­di­vi­du­als and groups by way of in­dus­tri­al per­so­na­liza­t­i­on and preemp­ti­on. An un­pre­ce­den­ted ra­tio­na­li­ty/mode of go­vern­ment, al­go­rith­mic go­vern­men­ta­li­ty is, An­toi­net­te Rouvroy will try to de­mons­tra­te, the mode of go­vern­ment ty­pi­cal of the age of multi­tu­des, and a uni­que­ly power­ful neo­li­be­ral re­ab­sorp­ti­on of the cri­ti­cal ethos in­heri­ted from the six­ties. The type of “know­ledge” it is fed with and pro­du­ces, the man­ner it ac­tual­ly af­fects/neu­tra­li­zes in­di­vi­du­al and collec­tive agen­cy, and the mo­des of in­di­vi­dua­ti­on sus­cep­ti­ble to in­flux or re­sist al­go­rith­mic go­vern­men­ta­li­ty are what this talk will be about.

Antoinette Rouvroy, Doc­tor of Laws of the Eu­ro­pean Uni­ver­si­ty In­sti­tu­te (Flo­rence), is per­ma­nent re­se­arch as­so­cia­te at the Bel­gi­an Na­tio­nal Fund for Sci­en­ti­fic Re­se­arch (FNRS) and se­ni­or re­se­ar­cher at the Re­se­arch Cent­re In­for­ma­ti­on, Law and So­cie­ty, Law Fa­cul­ty, Uni­ver­si­ty of Na­mur (Bel­gi­um). She is also mem­ber of the French CNIL (Com­mis­si­on In­for­ma­tique et Li­bertés)’s Fo­re­sight com­mit­tee. She aut­ho­red ‘Hu­man Ge­nes and Neo­li­be­ral Go­ver­nan­ce: A Fou­caul­di­an Cri­tique’ (Rout­ledge-Ca­ven­dish, 2008) and co-edi­ted, with Mi­reil­le Hil­de­brandt, ‘Law, Hu­man Agen­cy and Au­to­no­mic Com­pu­ting: Phi­lo­so­phers of Law meet Phi­lo­so­phers of Tech­no­lo­gy’ (Rout­ledge, 2011). In her wri­tings, she has ad­dres­sed, among other things, is­su­es of pri­va­cy, data pro­tec­tion, non-dis­cri­mi­na­ti­on, equa­li­ty of op­por­tu­nities, due pro­cess in the con­text of “data-rich” en­vi­ron­ments (the so-cal­led ge­ne­tic re­vo­lu­ti­on, the so-cal­led in­for­ma­ti­on/sur­veil­lan­ce so­cie­ty) with an ap­proach com­bi­ning le­gal and po­li­ti­cal phi­lo­so­phy. Her cur­rent in­ter­di­sci­pli­na­ry re­se­arch in­te­rests re­vol­ve around the con­cept of al­go­rith­mic go­vern­men­ta­li­ty. Un­der this fou­caul­di­an neo­lo­gism, she ex­plo­res the se­mio­tic-epis­te­mic, po­li­ti­cal, le­gal and phi­lo­so­phi­cal im­pli­ca­ti­ons of the com­pu­ta­tio­nal turn (Big Data, al­go­rith­mic pro­filing, in­dus­tri­al per­so­na­liza­t­i­on). She ex­plo­res the im­pact of al­go­rith­mic go­vern­men­ta­li­ty on our mo­des of pro­duc­tion of what counts and ac­counts for “rea­li­ty”, on our mo­des of go­vern­ment, and on the mo­da­li­ties of cri­tique, re­sis­tan­ce or re­cal­citran­ce.

This event is part of the se­ries Phi­lo­so­phy of the Web, organized by Dr. Yuk Hui, CDC.

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