Automated Decision Making and Society – Julian Thomas

Friday 15 March, 2019, 3.00pm – 4.30pm

MECO Seminar Room, S226, John Woolley Building A20, University of Sydney

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Digital media industries are at the head of a new wave of automation, driven by an expanding array of intelligent technologies, from deep learning to blockchains. Automation promises great benefits, but concerns abound over the prospects of industry disruption, increasing inequality, declining productivity, and diminishing economic security. With the rapid expansion of automated decision making, new risks to human rights and welfare are emerging. This talk reviews current developments in automation, and considers the ways in which researchers in media studies may contribute to the emergence of ethical, responsible and inclusive automation.

Julian Thomas is Professor of Media and Communications at RMIT University. He leads the Technology, Communications and Policy Lab in RMIT’s Digital Ethnography Research Centre. Julian’s recent publications include Internet on the Outstation (INC, 2016), Measuring the Digital Divide (2016, 2017, 2018), The Informal Media Economy (Polity, 2015), and Fashioning Intellectual Property (Cambridge UP, 2012). He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities, and is actively involved in a wide range of consumer, research and policy organisations in the technology and communications sectors.

Digital Rights in an Age of Surveillance AI

Thursday, 7 March, 2019, 4.30pm – 6.00pm

Seminar 2.03, RD Watt Building (A04), University of Sydney

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Three leading researchers of artificial intelligence and its societal implications discuss how emerging AI technologies are affecting our digital rights, particularly in light of the increased use of machine learning in forms of surveillance and policing. In partnership with the Goethe Institute, the Department of Media and Communications welcomes you to this in-conversation event with:

Professor Melvin Chen(Nanyang Technological University, Singapore), is a philosopher of artificial intelligence and researcher in creative cognition research, ethics, metaethics and aesthetics. He is a member of the ‘AI for Humanity’ initiative, and is interested in the cross-cultural negotiation of issues such as the ethics and governance of AI, and the role of education in an AI-driven age.

Dr Theresa Züger (Humboldt University, Germany) is Head of the Office for the Third Engagement Report at the Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society and a researcher of digital forms of civil disobedience. In 2017, Theresa was a research fellow at the Center for Advanced Internet Studies with her project Polynocular Tech Lab. She is co-founder of Bridge Figures, an organisation countering xenophobia with digital strategies. She tweets @thezueger

Mr Karaitiana Taiuru (Christchurch, New Zealand) is a long-time advocate of digital Māori rights and a researcher of data sovereignty and digital colonialism, te reo Māori revitalisation with technology, Māori representation and intellectual property rights. His PhD research examines the ways in which genome sequencing technologies perpetuate institutional racism and racial stereotyping.