Seminars & Workshops

FRIDAY, October 31

Trust & Information Policy in the Age of Data (Big or Small) (SIG/IFP and SIG/III)

In the past year, the power of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to provide us with ever-broadening opportunities for connection has been juxtaposed against chilling revelations regarding the powerful surveillance cocktail of technology, information access and big data analysis. The most notorious example of this was the exposure of widespread NSA surveillance practices by Edward Snowden. However, a variety of government agencies (federal and provincial) in the United States, Canada and around the globe continue to expand their capacity to collect and analyze large amounts of sensed and otherwise collected personal information. Automated license plate recognition systems, wearable and stationary cameras, unmanned aerial vehicles, environmental sensors and other technologies that result in large databases of information have been proliferating in urban (and non-urban) spaces. In some cases, these databases have been released to members of the public under freedom of information laws; in others, the data has been collected secretly and without public citizen oversight.

While on some level we (as citizens of our individual countries) understand that intelligence gathering is a part of government activity, constitutional protections are in place to ensure that we can feel secure in trusting that our own government will not engage in widespread surveillance directed at us or our allies. 

This full-day workshop will bring together researchers from an array of related disciplines to address the important moral, legal and policy questions raised by information creation, access and control in modern society. In particular, we will discuss initiatives and thoughts on how information policy research can contribute to our understanding of how trust interacts with government use of emerging technologies, surveillance and the collection, analysis and use of large amounts of personal information. Through presentation of works-in-progress research, position papers on current or proposed laws or policies and methodological brainstorming, this workshop will support independent, collaborative and interdisciplinary inquiry. The goal is to enhance ties among scholars within the information field who are researching trust in all its complexities and in all its manifestations (e.g., privacy, freedom of expression, security, records management, data mining, access to and control of information) and to provide a space to facilitate the development and discussion of methodological and theoretical approaches from multiple fields. 

With a day of fruitful collaboration, workshop sponsors expect cross-institutional, multidisciplinary projects to emerge.

Kristene Unsworth, Drexel University 
Nadia Caidi, University of Toronto
Lisa P. Nathan, University of British Columbia, Canada
Elizabeth Shaffer, University of British Columbia, Canada
Alan Rubel, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Adam D. Moore, University of Washington
Bryce Clayton Newell, University of Washington 
Heather MacNeil, University of Toronto


Early-bird:  SIG/IFP or SIG/III Members $190, Members $200, Non-members $220
Regular:  SIG/IFP or SIG/III Members $210, Members $220, Non-members $240