Book by Julie Cohen: “Our current legal system is to a great extent the product of an earlier period of social and economic transformation. From the late nineteenth century through the mid-twentieth century, as accountability for industrial-age harms became a pervasive source of conflict, the U.S. legal system underwent profound, tectonic shifts. Today, ownership of information-age resources and accountability for information-age harms have become pervasive sources of conflict, and different kinds of change are emerging.
In Between Truth and Power, Julie E. Cohen explores the relationships between legal institutions and political and economic transformation. Systematically examining struggles over the conditions of information flow and the design of information architectures and business models, she argues that as law is enlisted to help produce the profound economic and socio-technical shifts that have accompanied the emergence of the informational economy, it is too is transforming in fundamental ways. Drawing on elements from legal theory, science and technology studies, information studies, communication studies and organization studies to develop a complex theory of institutional change, Cohen develops an account of the gradual emergence of legal institutions adapted to the information age and of the power relationships that such institutions reflect and reproduce….(More)”.
Book by Sarah Barns: “This book reflects on what it means to live as urban citizens in a world increasingly shaped by the business and organisational logics of digital platforms. Where smart city strategies promote the roll-out of internet of things (IoT) technologies and big data analytics by city governments worldwide, platform urbanism responds to the deep and pervasive entanglements that exist between urban citizens, city services and platform ecosystems today.
Recent years have witnessed a backlash against major global platforms, evidenced by burgeoning literatures on platform capitalism, the platform society, platform surveillance and platform governance, as well as regulatory attention towards the market power of platforms in their dominance of global data infrastructure.
This book responds to these developments and asks: How do platform ecosystems reshape connected cities? How do urban researchers and policy makers respond to the logics of platform ecosystems and platform intermediation? What sorts of multisensory urban engagements are rendered through platform interfaces and modalities? And what sorts of governance challenges and responses are needed to cultivate and champion the digital public spaces of our connected lives….(More)”.
Book by Thomas Wischmeyer and Timo Rademacher: “This book assesses the normative and practical challenges for artificial intelligence (AI) regulation, offers comprehensive information on the laws that currently shape or restrict the design or use of AI, and develops policy recommendations for those areas in which regulation is most urgently needed. By gathering contributions from scholars who are experts in their respective fields of legal research, it demonstrates that AI regulation is not a specialized sub-discipline, but affects the entire legal system and thus concerns all lawyers.
Machine learning-based technology, which lies at the heart of what is commonly referred to as AI, is increasingly being employed to make policy and business decisions with broad social impacts, and therefore runs the risk of causing wide-scale damage. At the same time, AI technology is becoming more and more complex and difficult to understand, making it harder to determine whether or not it is being used in accordance with the law. In light of this situation, even tech enthusiasts are calling for stricter regulation of AI. Legislators, too, are stepping in and have begun to pass AI laws, including the prohibition of automated decision-making systems in Article 22 of the General Data Protection Regulation, the New York City AI transparency bill, and the 2017 amendments to the German Cartel Act and German Administrative Procedure Act. While the belief that something needs to be done is widely shared, there is far less clarity about what exactly can or should be done, or what effective regulation might look like.
The book is divided into two major parts, the first of which focuses on features common to most AI systems, and explores how they relate to the legal framework for data-driven technologies, which already exists in the form of (national and supra-national) constitutional law, EU data protection and competition law, and anti-discrimination law. In the second part, the book examines in detail a number of relevant sectors in which AI is increasingly shaping decision-making processes, ranging from the notorious social media and the legal, financial and healthcare industries, to fields like law enforcement and tax law, in which we can observe how regulation by AI is becoming a reality….(More)”.
Book by Chris Lintott: “The world of science has been transformed. Where once astronomers sat at the controls of giant telescopes in remote locations, praying for clear skies, now they have no need to budge from their desks, as data arrives in their inbox. And what they receive is overwhelming; projects now being built provide more data in a few nights than in the whole of humanity’s history of observing the Universe. It’s not just astronomy either – dealing with this deluge of data is the major challenge for scientists at CERN, and for biologists who use automated cameras to spy on animals in their natural habitats. Artificial intelligence is one part of the solution – but will it spell the end of human involvement in scientific discovery?
No, argues Chris Lintott. We humans still have unique capabilities to bring to bear – our curiosity, our capacity for wonder, and, most importantly, our capacity for surprise. It seems that humans and computers working together do better than computers can on their own. But with so much scientific data, you need a lot of scientists – a crowd, in fact. Lintott found such a crowd in the Zooniverse, the web-based project that allows hundreds of thousands of enthusiastic volunteers to contribute to science.
In this book, Lintott describes the exciting discoveries that people all over the world have made, from galaxies to pulsars, exoplanets to moons, and from penguin behavior to old ship’s logs. This approach builds on a long history of so-called “citizen science,” given new power by fast internet and distributed data. Discovery is no longer the remit only of scientists in specialist labs or academics in ivory towers. It’s something we can all take part in. As Lintott shows, it’s a wonderful way to engage with science, yielding new insights daily. You, too, can help explore the Universe in your lunch hour…(More)”.
Book by Virginia Dignum: “In this book, the author examines the ethical implications of Artificial Intelligence systems as they integrate and replace traditional social structures in new sociocognitive-technological environments. She discusses issues related to the integrity of researchers, technologists, and manufacturers as they design, construct, use, and manage artificially intelligent systems; formalisms for reasoning about moral decisions as part of the behavior of artificial autonomous systems such as agents and robots; and design methodologies for social agents based on societal, moral, and legal values.
Throughout the book the author discusses related work, conscious of both classical, philosophical treatments of ethical issues and the implications in modern, algorithmic systems, and she combines regular references and footnotes with suggestions for further reading. This short overview is suitable for undergraduate students, in both technical and non-technical courses, and for interested and concerned researchers, practitioners, and citizens….(More)”.
Book by Rikke Frank Jørgensen: “Today such companies as Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Twitter play an increasingly important role in how users form and express opinions, encounter information, debate, disagree, mobilize, and maintain their privacy. What are the human rights implications of an online domain managed by privately owned platforms? According to the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, adopted by the UN Human Right Council in 2011, businesses have a responsibility to respect human rights and to carry out human rights due diligence. But this goal is dependent on the willingness of states to encode such norms into business regulations and of companies to comply. In this volume, contributors from across law and internet and media studies examine the state of human rights in today’s platform society.
The contributors consider the “datafication” of society, including the economic model of data extraction and the conceptualization of privacy. They examine online advertising, content moderation, corporate storytelling around human rights, and other platform practices. Finally, they discuss the relationship between human rights law and private actors, addressing such issues as private companies’ human rights responsibilities and content regulation…(More)”.
Book edited by Karen Yeung and Martin Lodge: “As the power and sophistication of of ‘big data’ and predictive analytics has continued to expand, so too has policy and public concern about the use of algorithms in contemporary life. This is hardly surprising given our increasing reliance on algorithms in daily life, touching policy sectors from healthcare, transport, finance, consumer retail, manufacturing education, and employment through to public service provision and the operation of the criminal justice system. This has prompted concerns about the need and importance of holding algorithmic power to account, yet it is far from clear that existing legal and other oversight mechanisms are up to the task. This collection of essays, edited by two leading regulatory governance scholars, offers a critical exploration of ‘algorithmic regulation’, understood both as a means for co-ordinating and regulating social action and decision-making, as well as the need for institutional mechanisms through which the power of algorithms and algorithmic systems might themselves be regulated. It offers a unique perspective that is likely to become a significant reference point for the ever-growing debates about the power of algorithms in daily life in the worlds of research, policy and practice. The range of contributors are drawn from a broad range of disciplinary perspectives including law, public administration, applied philosophy, data science and artificial intelligence.
Taken together, they highlight the rise of algorithmic power, the potential benefits and risks associated with this power, the way in which Sheila Jasanoff’s long-standing claim that ‘technology is politics’ has been thrown into sharp relief by the speed and scale at which algorithmic systems are proliferating, and the urgent need for wider public debate and engagement of their underlying values and value trade-offs, the way in which they affect individual and collective decision-making and action, and effective and legitimate mechanisms by and through which algorithmic power is held to account….(More)”.
Book by Miguel A. Hernán, James M. Robins: “Causal Inference is an admittedly pretentious title for a book. Causal inference is a complex scientific task that relies on triangulating evidence from multiple sources and on the application of a variety of methodological approaches. No book can possibly provide a comprehensive description of methodologies for causal inference across the sciences. The authors of any Causal Inference book will have to choose which aspects of causal inference methodology they want to emphasize.
The title of this introduction reflects our own choices: a book that helps scientists–especially health and social scientists–generate and analyze data to make causal inferences that are explicit about both the causal question and the assumptions underlying the data analysis. Unfortunately, the scientific literature is plagued by studies in which the causal question is not explicitly stated and the investigators’ unverifiable assumptions are not declared. This casual attitude towards causal inference has led to a great deal of confusion. For example, it is not uncommon to find studies in which the effect estimates are hard to interpret because the data analysis methods cannot appropriately answer the causal question (were it explicitly stated) under the investigators’ assumptions (were they declared).
In this book, we stress the need to take the causal question seriously enough to articulate it, and to delineate the separate roles of data and assumptions for causal inference. Once these foundations are in place, causal inferences become necessarily less casual, which helps prevent confusion. The book describes various data analysis approaches that can be used to estimate the causal effect of interest under a particular set of assumptions when data are collected on each individual in a population. A key message of the book is that causal inference cannot be reduced to a collection of recipes for data analysis.
The book is divided in three parts of increasing difficulty: Part I is about causal inference without models (i.e., nonparametric identification of causal effects), Part II is about causal inference with models (i.e., estimation of causal effects with parametric models), and Part III is about causal inference from complex longitudinal data (i.e., estimation of causal effects of time-varying treatments)….(More) (Additional Material)”.
Demos Press Release: “American democracy is in crisis. In their new book, Civic Power, political scientists K. Sabeel Rahman and Hollie Russon Gilman argue that the daily political turmoil of the Trump era actually masks a larger ailment. The current threat to U.S. democracy is rooted not just in the outcome of one election or the ascent of one leader, but in deeper systemic forms of inequality that concentrate political and economic power in the hands of the few at the expense of the many.
Drawing on historical and social science research, as well as case studies of contemporary democratic innovations across the country, Civic Power calls for a broader approach to democratic reform, offering a critical framework and concrete suggestions to support those reforms that meaningfully redistribute power to citizens.
This original, timely effort offering fresh thinking about how best to pursue civic engagement and democracy reform. It offers concrete suggests to revive grassroots civil society and calls for novel approaches to governance, policymaking, civic technology, and institutional design. With these tools, readers can aim to address structural disparities to build a more inclusive, empowered, bottom-up democracy where communities and people have greater agency, voice, and civic power….(Excerpt)”.
Book by Huadong Guo, Michael F. Goodchild and Alessandro Annoni: “This open access book offers a summary of the development of Digital Earth over the past twenty years. By reviewing the initial vision of Digital Earth, the evolution of that vision, the relevant key technologies, and the role of Digital Earth in helping people respond to global challenges, this publication reveals how and why Digital Earth is becoming vital for acquiring, processing, analysing and mining the rapidly growing volume of global data sets about the Earth.
The main aspects of Digital Earth covered here include: Digital Earth platforms, remote sensing and navigation satellites, processing and visualizing geospatial information, geospatial information infrastructures, big data and cloud computing, transformation and zooming, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, and social media. Moreover, the book covers in detail the multi-layered/multi-faceted roles of Digital Earth in response to sustainable development goals, climate changes, and mitigating disasters, the applications of Digital Earth (such as digital city and digital heritage), the citizen science in support of Digital Earth, the economic value of Digital Earth, and so on. This book also reviews the regional and national development of Digital Earth around the world, and discusses the role and effect of education and ethics. Lastly, it concludes with a summary of the challenges and forecasts the future trends of Digital Earth.By sharing case studies and a broad range of general and scientific insights into the science and technology of Digital Earth, this book offers an essential introduction for an ever-growing international audience….(More)”.