Call for Papers: Panel “What makes data circulation possible?” at STS-Hub 2023, deadline October 16th 2022

Dear colleagues,
We are pleased to invite your contributions to the panel ‘What makes data circulation possible?’ which will take place during the first The conference ( takes place on 15-17 March 2023 at the Human Technology Center Aachen.


What makes data circulation possible?

We live in an era where data-driven practices have long left the scientific and public administrative realm to become an important part of day-to-day activities, like nutrition, physical exercises and self-observation. Data draws ever wider circles, it seems.

However, at the moment, legal, regulatory and infrastructural efforts to enclose free floating data can be observed in many countries (Floridi 2015). For example, aside established actors such as biobanks and clinics, the health data ecosystem is increasingly expanding, including novel data sources like “digital phenotypes” (Jain et al. 2015; Birk et al. 2021), public and private actors that mediate access to datasets (Snell, Tarkkala, and Tupasela 2021), and various practices for interpreting what counts as normal and pathological (Sharon and Lucivero 2019). Just in May this year the European Health Data Space was launched by the European Commission saying: “Health data are the blood running through the veins of our healthcare systems.” (European Commission 2022). In Europe and elsewhere, these governmental activities and investment in building capacities for health data management have been prepared for a while now. These preparatory policy- and lawmaking activities, as well as the accompanying infrastructural efforts raise questions as to how health data circulation will be structured according to social, cultural, political, economic and technological norms, standards and practices. They also raise questions as to what counts as health or medical data in the first place, based on what valuation practices. This panel seeks to explore what makes the circulation of data possible and its normative, ontological, and economical consequences (Abend 2020). We are interested in both conceptually and methodologically oriented contributions. Relevant topics for abstracts include, but are not limited to, the following issues:

  • Who is involved in building, regulating and operating spaces in which data circulates?
  • Are there emerging any (new) data related professions related to spaces of data circulation?
  • How do novel arrangements of data circulation interact with existing institutions?
  • How are roles of gatekeeping and mediating redistributed?
  • What kind of ideas, interests, goals and desires are motivating the circulation of data? Are they related to particular arrangements of data circulation?
  • What role could organizational arrangements, such as established commercial platforms, data trusts or health data cooperatives play for mediating between multiple interests in health data?


Please send your abstract (up to 500 words) to the panel organizers Danny Lämmerhirt ( and Anne Koppenburger ( until October 16th 2022.

More information on this call for papers can be found here.
An overview of all calls for papers/abstracts for the in Aachen (March 15-17 2023) can be found here.