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Technology and Democracy - 9 March 2017 - Has the Public Been Well Served by Technology Journalism?
1:28:00Charles Arthur: Has the Public Been Well Served by Technology Journalism? Amid the rise of Google, Facebook and Apple - at the same time that the "traditional media" has been under greater financial and attention pressure than ever before - are we being sufficiently informed, in the right way, about the companies which can influence our lives? Panellists: Andrew Brown (Guardian), Carole Cadwalldr (The Observer), Ingrid Lunden (Techcrunch) Chair: Charles Arthur, Freelance Tech Journalist and Visiting Fellow at the Technology and Democracy project at CRASSH (formerly Technology Editor at the Guardian)
Technology and Democracy - 26 April 2016 - Helen Margetts: Social Media and Political Turbulence
1:15:00Speaker - Helen Margetts, OII Respondent - Sharath Srinivasan, POLIS, Cambridge The last few years have seen increasingly frenzied speculation about the role of social media in political mobilisation. In an important recent book Helen Margetts and her colleagues report on research drawing on large-scale data generated from the Internet and real-world events to show how mobilisations that succeed are unpredictable, unstable and often unsustainable. To reach a better understanding of this unruly force in the political world, the researchers have used experiments that test how social media influence citizens when they are deciding whether or not to participate. They conclude that a new kind of “chaotic pluralism” is the model of democracy that is emerging in our networked environment. Helen Margetts is the Director of the OII , and Professor of Society and the Internet at Oxford. She is a political scientist specialising in digital era governance and politics, investigating political behaviour, digital government and government-citizen interactions in the age of the internet, social media and big data. She has published over a hundred books, articles and major research reports in this area, including Political Turbulence: How Social Media Shape Collective Action (with Peter John, scott Hale and Taha Yasseri, 2015); Paradoxes of Modernization (with Perri 6 and Christopher Hood, 2010); Digital Era Governance (with Patrick Dunleavy, 2006); and The Tools of Government in the Digital Age (with Christopher Hood, 2007). In 2003 she and Patrick Dunleavy won the ‘Political Scientists Making a Difference’ award from the UK Political Studies Association, in part for a series of policy reports on Government on the Internet for the UK National Audit Office (1999, 2002 and 2007), and she continues working to maximise the policy impact of her research. She sits on the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on the Future of Government and is editor-in-chief of the journal Policy and Internet. She is a fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. From 2011- 2014 she held the ESRC professorial fellowship ‘The Internet, Political Science and Public policy: Re-examining Collective Action, Governance and Citizen-Governance Interactions in the Digital Era’. Professor Margetts joined the OII in 2004 from University College London where she was a Professor in Political Science and Director of the School of Public Policy. She began her career as a computer programmer and systems analyst with Rank Xerox after receiving her BSc in mathematics from the University of Bristol. She returned to studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science in 1989, completing an MSc in Politics and Public Policy in 1990 and a PhD in Government in 1996. She worked as a researcher at LSE from 1991 to 1994 and a lecturer at Birkbeck College, University of London from 1994 to 1999.
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Technology and Democracy - 19 October 2015 - The End of Safe Harbour: Implications of the Schrems Judgement
1:14:00A lunchtime workshop of the ‘Technology and Democracy’ project In a landmark judgment on October 7 the European Court of Justice has ruled that the Safe Harbour framework governing the transfer of EU citizens’ personal data to the US does not comply with the requirements of EU Data Protection law in light of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and is therefore invalid under EU law. The Safe Harbour framework stemmed from a decision of the European Commission in 2000 (2000/520/EC) that the US afforded an adequate level of protection of personal data transferred to the US from the EU. This decision was made long before the EU Charter became part of EU law and more than a decade prior to the Edward Snowden revelations. The ECJ’s judgment thus invalidates arrangements that for 15 years have allowed Internet companies to transfer the personal data of European users to server farms in the US and elsewhere. It has very wide-ranging implications — not just for data-protection law, but also for the economics of Internet companies and for international relations. This workshop will discuss some of those implications. Panel: David Runciman (chair), John Naughton, Ross Anderson, Nora Ni Loideain
Geoffrey Stone - 15 May 2015 - Perilous Times: The View from Inside the NSA
1:16:00Geoffrey Stone Edward H Levi Distinguished Service Professor of Law, University of Chicago Law School How did American intelligence agencies respond to the threats posed after 9/11? Professor Geoffrey R. Stone, who served on president Obama’s five-person Review Group that was charged with evaluating the nation’s foreign intelligence programs after the Snowden revelations, will offer a behind-the-scenes peek into the secret world of US national security surveillance. He will discuss both the merits and dangers of some of the nation’s most controversial foreign intelligence programs and he will outline some of the ways in which those programs can be reformed to strike a better balance between liberty and security in the future. Geoffrey R. Stone is the Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor of Law at the University of Chicago and the author or co-author of many books on US constitutional law, including Top Secret: When Our Government Keeps Us in the Dark (2007), War and Liberty: An American Dilemma (2007), and Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime (2004). Perilous Times received eight national book awards, including the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for the Best Book of the Year in History. In the 2013, Mr. Stone served on the five-member Review Group appointed by President Obama to make recommendations concerning NSA surveillance and related issues. Mr. Stone currently serves as a Member of the Senior Advisory Group to the Director of National Intelligence.
Michael A Osborne - 12 May 2015 - Technology at Work: The Future of Innovation and Employment
1:48:00For decades economists, technologists, policy-makers and politicians have argued about whether automation destroys or creates jobs. And up to now the general consensus has been that while some jobs are eliminated by automation, more new jobs have, in general, been created. But recently, advances in computing power, machine learning and AI, software, sensor technology and data analytics have brought the "automation" question to the fore again. People are asking if a radical disruption is under way. Are we heading into a "second machine age" in which advanced robotics and intelligent computing make occupational categories that were hitherto reserved for humans vulnerable to automation? One of the most penetrating attempts to answer this question was the research conducted by Oxford scholars Michael Osborne and Carl Frey which resulted in a path-breaking report arguing that 47 per cent of US job categories might be vulnerable to computerisation in the next two decades. In this Seminar, the first in the new Technology & Democracy project's series, Michael Osborne discusses his research and its implications. Michael A Osborne is an expert in the development of machine intelligence in sympathy with societal needs. His work on robust and scalable inference algorithms in Machine Learning has been successfully applied in diverse and challenging contexts, from aiding the detection of planets in distant solar systems to enabling self-driving cars to determine when their maps may have changed due to roadworks. Dr Osborne also has deep interests in the broader societal consequences of machine learning and robotics, and has analysed how intelligent algorithms might soon substitute for human workers. Dr Osborne is an Associate Professor in Machine Learning, a co-director of the Oxford Martin programme on Technology and Employment, an Official Fellow of Exeter College, and a Faculty Member of the Oxford-Man Institute for Quantitative Finance, all at the University of Oxford.