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Governing Algorithms, An Introduction

So how did this start? Actually all of us—Solon, Sophie, and many oth­er fel­lows and research, not just at PRG, the Information Law Institute, but also at MCC—we’ve been study­ing com­pu­ta­tion, automa­tion, and con­trol in dif­fer­ent forms for quite a long time. But it was only at the end of last sum­mer real­ly that we real­ized that there’s this new notion of the algo­rithm gain­ing currency.

danah boyd: Algorithmic Accountability and Transparency

In the next ten years we will see data-driven tech­nolo­gies recon­fig­ure sys­tems in many dif­fer­ent sec­tors, from autonomous vehi­cles to per­son­al­ized learn­ing, pre­dic­tive polic­ing, to pre­ci­sion med­i­cine. While the advances that we will see will cre­ate phe­nom­e­nal new oppor­tu­ni­ties, they will also cre­ate new challenges—and new worries—and it behooves us to start grap­pling with these issues now so that we can build healthy sociotech­ni­cal systems.

Open Discussion on Lucas Introna’s Algorithms, Performativity and Governability”

I just want to be clear that I’m not say­ing that the details of the algo­rithms are irrel­e­vant. In a way they can mat­ter very much, and you know, in a cer­tain cir­cum­stance, in a cer­tain sit­u­at­ed use, it might mat­ter sig­nif­i­cant­ly what the algo­rithm does but we can’t say that a pri­ori. So we need to both open up the algo­rithms, we need to under­stand them as much as pos­si­ble, but we must not be seduced to believe that if we under­stand them there­fore we know what they do.

Comments on Lucas Introna’s Algorithms, Performativity and Governability”

We can’t gov­ern through knowl­edge, prop­er­ly speak­ing. Even if many algo­rithms are trade secrets, Lucas and oth­ers have remind­ed us near­ly all would not be sur­veil­l­able by human beings, even if we had access to their source code. We have to begin what­ev­er process from this fun­da­men­tal lack of knowl­edge. We need to start from the same epis­te­mo­log­i­cal place that many of the pro­duc­ers of algo­rithms do.

Algorithms, Performativity and Governability

I think this ques­tion what do algo­rithms do,” which points to the ques­tion of agency, I think is an inap­pro­pri­ate way to ask the ques­tion. I think we should rather ask the ques­tion, what do algo­rithms become in sit­u­at­ed practices?

How to Survive the 21st Century

Of all the dif­fer­ent issues we face, three prob­lems pose exis­ten­tial chal­lenges to our species. These three exis­ten­tial chal­lenges are nuclear war, eco­log­i­cal col­lapse, and tech­no­log­i­cal dis­rup­tion. We should focus on them.

Problematic Predictions: A Complex Question for Complex Systems

When you make a deci­sion to opt for an auto­mat­ed process, to some extent you’re already by doing so com­pro­mis­ing trans­paren­cy. Or you could say it the oth­er way around. It’s pos­si­ble to argue that if you opt for extreme­ly strict trans­paren­cy reg­u­la­tion, you’re mak­ing a com­pro­mise in terms of automation.

Occupy Algorithms: Will Algorithms Serve the 99%?

More than sort of a dis­cus­sion of what’s been said so far this is a kind of research pro­pos­al of what I would like to see hap­pen­ing at the inter­sec­tion of CS and this audience.

The Emperor’s New Codes — Reputation and Search Algorithms in the Finance Sector

The study of search, be it by peo­ple like David Stark in soci­ol­o­gy, or econ­o­mists or oth­ers, I tend to sort of see it in the tra­di­tion of a real­ly rich socio-theoretical lit­er­a­ture on the soci­ol­o­gy of knowl­edge. And as a lawyer, I tend to com­ple­ment that by think­ing if there’s prob­lems, maybe we can look to the his­to­ry of com­mu­ni­ca­tions law.

Compassion through Computation: Fighting Algorithmic Bias

I think the ques­tion I’m try­ing to for­mu­late is, how in this world of increas­ing opti­miza­tion where the algo­rithms will be accu­rate… They’ll increas­ing­ly be accu­rate. But their appli­ca­tion could lead to dis­crim­i­na­tion. How do we stop that?

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