Cultural Psychology and Anthropology of Knowledge



Many of our activities take place in the RUSTlab. For information please see:

Book Launch: "Die private und die verteilte Person: Studien zu Personalisierung und Privatheit in Zeiten der Digitalisierung"

24th April 2024, 16 hrs., MB 4/165 at Ruhr University Bochum
RUSTLab cordially invites you to the launch of Fabian Pittroff's book "Die private und die verteilte Person: Studien zu Personalisierung und Privatheit in Zeiten der Digitalisierung". The monograph was published this year by transcript.
The “person” is not a synonym for ‘human’, but a social mode of existence for human and non-human beings. While the person of modernity is bound to the private sphere, it is being repositioned with digitalization. Fabian Pittroff analyses this development in a series of studies dedicated to comprehensive aspects: the social theory of the person, the history of the private sphere, the crisis of democratic institutions, the avant-garde post-privacy movement, the digitalization of friendship, the production of selfies and the predictions of the data economy. Two modes of personalization are emerging: While the private person is oriented towards a center, the distributed person exists decentrally.

Interview with Deutschlandfunk Kultur on Electronic Waste

13th April 2024
In an interview for Deutschlandfunk Kultur's digital culture podcast "Breitband", Stefan Laser talks about electronic waste and the responsibility of consumers and the industry. Listen to the podcast by following this link:

Everyday Security Practices

10th April 2024, Worms
At this year's annual conference on IT-security of the German Society for Informatics, Estrid Sørensen will together with Dominik Herrmann (Universität Bamberg), Dennis Eckhardt (Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU)) and Isabel Münch (Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik (BSI)) participate in a panel on "IT-security in Digitalisation of Everyday Practices".  The panel is organised by Felix Freiling and will take its point of departure in questions concerning ethnography of cybersecurity practices.

More information on the conference can be found here.

RUSTlab Lectures Summer Term 2024

Summer Term 2024, MB 4/165 at Ruhr-University Bochum and Zoom
The programme for the 11th round of the RUSTlab Lecture series is now available. The lectures will take place on site in MB 4/165 and online via Zoom. This semester's guiding theme is "Replacement" and speakers include Ronja Trischler (TU Dortmund), Klaus Høyer (University of Copenhagen), Robert Queckenberg (Ruhr-University Bochum) and Leman Çelik (Ruhr-University Bochum). Please find more information here. Everyone is most welcome!

Inaugural Conference of stsing: Leakage

19th – 22nd March 2024, TU Dresden
The CUPAK team travels collectively to the inaugural conference of ststing Leakage at the TU Dresden to present their current research.
In their presentation „On Becoming an Infrastructure: Personas of Participation and Intervention“, Mace Ojala and Fabian Pittroff will draw on their ongoing projects within the Collaborative Research Center (CRC) Virtual Lifeworlds to investigate practices of data handling and their infrastructures. Their presentation will also review how participatory and interventionist research can benefit from the deployment of practical personas—virtual characters that STS ethnographers and infrastructure caretakers can enact to become effective and creative agents of a common research environment.
Estrid Sørensen, Leman Celik and Stefan Laser will chair a panel on „Planetary Data“, focusing on the question of how to live well with data on a damaged planet. Drawing on their work within the CRC subproject Virtual Infrastructures, they will also give a presentation on „Planetary Knowledges: How Data Infrastructures Link Science with the Planet“ together with Sandra Abels and Lynn Werner. The presentation will discuss current STS literature and how it engages with (1) extractive and other planetary relations including their local and geopolitical effects, (2) scientific data infrastructures, and the care for planetary matter in operation and maintenance, and with (3) scientific data practices and their dependencies on data infrastructures.

Chip Rush? Semiconductors in Vietnam as a Public Controversy

5th March 2024, Mipec Tower Hanoi
As a part of the CRC subproject Virtual Lifeworlds Stefan Laser will organise a workshop on semiconductors in Vietnam as a public controversy together with the local architectural office and research team Hanoi Ad Hoc.
Semiconductors are coming to Vietnam. But not without uncertainties and controversies. What are the regulations, prominent voices, allies, and opponents shaping the "chip rush"? What are the affected communities and their interpretations of the matter? Together with Hanoi Ad Hoc, Stefan Laser investigated company data, legal developments and the public discourse in order to find an approach to the complex situation. The workshop will include a presentation of preliminary findings, reports from stakeholders, and a group discussion.

More information can be found on the website of the CRC.

Quo Vadis kulturwissenschaftliche Digital Humanities?

28th February 2024, University of Passau
As part of the DHd conference "Quo Vadis Digital Humanities?" at the University of Passau, Estrid
Sørensen will present a talk on cultural studies perspectives in the German-speaking digital humanities together with Ina Dietzsch, Lina Franken, Sabine Imeri, Katharina Kinder-Kurlanda and Libuše Hannah Vepřek. 
Even ten years after the first DHd conference, cultural studies and, in particular, empirical cultural studies perspectives are still an exception in the German-speaking digital humanities (DH). The panel will discuss how cultural studies DH is organised and which directions can be taken in the future. 
Specific methodological developments will be presented and combined with conceptual-theoretical considerations. The panel will examine what relevant areas of DH are or can be in the empirical cultural studies disciplines and what role DH currently plays in cultural studies. Linked to this is the question of how this could change in the near future, which steps are expedient for this and what is currently preventing cultural studies from being more closely integrated into DH. Closely related to this is the identification of new perspectives that bring empirical cultural studies research into the DH and develop it further. The aim is to identify methodological potential as well as theoretical-conceptual perspectives that further differentiate cultural studies DH.
More information on the talk and the conference paper can be found here.

Artificial Intelligence Ethics

24th-25th February 2024
As part of the seminar series on "New Technologies" organized in cooperation with Ideenwerkstaat e.V. and Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Willebadessen on 24-25 February, Leman Çelik will deliver a talk on "Artificial Intelligence Ethics" as part of integration projects through educational activities.

Data Journey in Scientific Practices

22nd-23rd February 2024, Goethe University Frankfurt
Leman Çelik will present her research on "Data Journey in Scientific Practices" at the workshop "Data Stops Data Flows: Exploring Methods for Researching (with) Data", organized by the project group "Tracing Data Politics" at Goethe University Frankfurt on 22-23 February. You can find more information about the workshop here.

Authors' workshop: Knowledge production, data infrastructures and planetary matter

23rd - 24th November 2023, Collaboration Space GB 8/129 at the Ruhr-University Bochum
How does scientific knowledge production through its engagement with data and data infrastructures come to have planetary effects? How does planetary matter through its transformation into data and data infrastructures contribute to shaping particular (new) modes of knowledge production? This is a follow-up workshop where we discuss contributions to a special issue in preparation.

Please find the poster for this workshop here.

Climate Change & Sustainability - Interdisciplinary Perspectives on a Sustainable Human-Environment Relationship

16th November 2023, 16 hrs., HGB 50 at the Ruhr-University Bochum
Stefan Laser will speak in the lecture series "Climate Change & Sustainability - Interdisciplinary Perspectives on a Sustainable Human-Environment Relationship" about e-waste and industrial responsibility (in German). This is an open course, click
here for more information (and to download all presentations).

New technologies, data infrastructures and their effects

10th-12th November 2023
In the seminar "Artificial intelligence: advantage or risk?", organised in cooperation with Ideenwerkstaat e.V. and Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in Willebadessen on 10-12 November, Leman Çelik will give a talk on "New technologies, data infrastructures and their effects" as part of the integration projects through educational activities.

Everyday scientific data practices and their planetary matter

4th October 2023, 15:15 hrs., Dietrich-Keuning-Haus, Dortmund
The environmental impacts of "Big Tech" and "Clouds" are well documented in the literature, but narratives about the entanglement of scientific data practices and the ecological environment through data infrastructures are lacking. Leman Celik and Estrid Sørensen have conducted interviews with scientists in data-intensive research fields that show an increased expansion of scientific data infrastructures. They present the results at
this year's conference of the German Society for Empirical Cultural Studies (DGEKW) and focus on the few but important moments of everyday scientific data practices that relate data infrastructures to energy consumption and hardware production.

RUSTlab Lectures Winter Term 2023/24

Winter term 2023/24, Ruhr-University Bochum and via Zoom
The programme for the 10th round of the RUSTlab Lecture series is now available. The lectures will take place on site and online. The guiding theme this semester is "Best Futures" and speakers include Nancy Mauro-Flude (RMIT University, Australia), Stefan Laser (Ruhr-University Bochum), Hannes Krämer and Dominik Gerst (University of Duisburg-Essen), René Tuma (TU Berlin) and Femke Snelting (The Institute for Technology in the Public Interest). Please find more information here. Everyone is most welcome!

Find previous news in the archive.