Digitalization in Feminist STS Perspective
Digitalization has become a buzzword for labeling a broad range of sociotechnical transformations in today’s society, and research on digitalization from a variety of disciplines and theoretical approaches continues to grow. A majority of this research deals with the effects and consequences of digitalization, focusing on the impact that digital technologies have on society, and thereby neglecting the ways in which society shapes digital technologies, their specificities and above all, how they are entangled with socio-cultural norms, structures and practices. Under these circumstances, this panel asks what F(eminist)STS perspectives on digitalization have to offer, which questions and topics they direct our focus to, and which methodological consequences they imply. Put differently, we are interested in the benefits of applying FSTS perspectives to analyzing digitalization. At the same time, we want to discuss how studying digitalization and digital technologies can advance FSTS, i.e., how the study of digital phenomena challenges and/or extends the analytical concepts of FSTS. Proposed questions could include: How are the gender binary and other classifications and oppositions of inequality entangled with the development and deployment of digital technologies? How are digital technologies challenging and/or reproducing established gender norms, relations and structures in our everyday lives as well as in academia? How are digital technologies taking part in producing FSTS perspectives and knowledges? How did the Covid-19 pandemic impact digital developments, their relation with gender, and FSTS approaches to digitalization? We invite work that is theoretical or conceptual as well as empirical that looks at digitalization of the everyday as well as in in the context of academia.
Convenors: Bianca Prietl (University of Basel); Doris Leibetseder (University of Basel); Anna Kraft (University of Basel)
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