[URBANTH-L]Workshop Announcement: Surveillance and Empowerment
torin.monahan at vanderbilt.edu
Mon Nov 10 00:38:53 EST 2008
OPEN CALL FOR PARTICIPATION
Workshop on Surveillance & Empowerment
March 20-22, 2009
Vanderbilt University; Nashville, Tennessee, USA
This workshop will bring together transdisciplinary and international
scholars studying the social implications of contemporary surveillance
with a particular interest in the complexities of empowerment. In the
surveillance studies literature, there have been significant
contributions on social sorting, digital discrimination, privacy
invasion, racial profiling, sexual harassment, and other mechanisms of
unequal treatment. In contradistinction, this workshop seeks to
explore the potential of surveillance for individual autonomy and
dignity, fairness and due process, community cooperation and
empowerment, and social equality. Key to this inquiry will be
questioning the extent to which surveillance can be designed,
employed, and regulated to contribute to democratic practices and/or
the social good.
The very framing of the workshop in terms of “surveillance and
empowerment” begs the question of empowerment for whom and for what
purposes. Thus, we seek to provoke a broad discussion about the ways
in which surveillance practices may unfairly embody advantages for
some groups over others and to explore alternatives. To this end, the
workshop organizers seek to include as many different voices as
possible, from as many different countries as possible.
Given the diversity of scholarly interest in and approaches to
surveillance, the workshop will be structured around discussion themes
that individuals from any disciplinary background can participate in.
Possible research areas might include (but aren’t limited to):
• Surveillance in post-authoritarian societies – toward restrictions
and counters to the unleashed surveillance of former regimes.
• Ubiquitous computing environments that provide care for the
dependent and elderly.
• Social networking tools employed by social movements.
• Surveillance of environmental toxins and waste management.
• Monitoring of energy consumption at any level.
• Surveillance of corporations, government agencies, or political
parties by watchdog groups.
• Policies for ensuring privacy, accountability, and transparency
with video or other surveillance systems.
The findings of the workshops will be disseminated by means of a
special issue of a journal, such as Surveillance & Society or
Theoretical Criminology, or as an edited book.
Travel stipends, food, and lodging will be provided for all
participants. Participants will be chosen to provide a balanced
representation of both junior and senior scholars, disciplinary
training, and international perspectives. Graduate students and
participants from outside the U.S. are especially encouraged to apply.
Potential participants should submit:
1. A 500-750 word abstract that discusses how your current and/
or future research fits with the proposed workshop theme of
surveillance and empowerment, and
2. A two-page curriculum vitae or resume, listing your relevant
publications and experience.
Deadline: January 5, 2009
Submit materials to: workshop at publicsurveillance.com
Full papers will not be required in advance of the workshop. Article
submissions for the journal will be requested in the months following
the workshop (at a date yet to be determined). Should we decide to
pursue an edited book as an outcome of this workshop, we will ask
participants to submit titles, abstracts, and brief biographies.
We will select and notify participants by January 20, 2009. For more
information, please contact Torin Monahan
(torin.monahan at vanderbilt.edu) or visit www.publicsurveillance.com/workshop.html
This project is supported by the National Science Foundation (under
grant #0623122 and #0853749) and by the Department of Human and
Organizational Development at Vanderbilt University.
The Workshop Committee
(Torin Monahan, Gary T. Marx, Simon A. Cole, Jill A. Fisher)
Torin Monahan, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Human & Organizational Development
Associate Professor of Medicine
More information about the URBANTH-L