Associate Professor, Sociology and Anthropology
PhD Sociology. Queen's University
As a sociologist, I study the social dimensions of technology with an empirical focus on communications & information technology (CIT). My research emphasizes the broader social and political contexts of CIT, focusing especially on risk, surveillance, privacy, and social justice.
In my view, social justice describes the historic and ongoing struggle for an equitable distribution of justice in our societies. What does it mean to think about risk-management and surveillance systems through a social justice lens? In my current research, I want to understand how people and organizations use surveillance and other risk-management techniques to identify and address risks. Furthermore, I want to understand who may be advantaged, and who may be disadvantaged, by surveillance and risk-management practices. What impacts, in other words, do surveillance and risk-management practices have on our collective efforts to realize social justice?
Surveillance & Risk Management in Everyday Online Consumption
In another domain of inquiry, we are critically examining efforts to regulate (or leverage) ‘dangerous,’ ‘risky,’ and ‘addictive’ forms of digitally-mediated consumption. With a focus on what might be termed the ‘gamblification’ of games—the incorporation of addictive, gambling-like retention mechanics into games and other gamified online activities—we consider who is set up to win, and who loses, in contemporary (personal) information economies. Here are some recent examples of this work:
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