International Journal of Communication Publishes a Special Section on Civic Participation in the Datafied Society

International Journal of Communication Publishes a Special Section on Civic Participation in the Datafied Society

How do we advance citizen participation in a world increasingly governed through data infrastructures?

As data systems are deployed for commercial and public services, citizens are profiled, categorized, and “scored” and their future behavior predicted. Yet they have few possibilities to understand and intervene into these processes. What, then, are the implications of the increasing rollout of algorithmic and data-based decision-making for active citizenship and participation? How can citizens intervene into the development and management of the data systems that increasingly organize society? How do we maintain and expand civic participation in a context of rapid technological change?

Building on the growing range of research in the fields of critical data studies and data justice, this Special Section on Civic Participation in the Datafied Society, guest-edited by Arne Hintz, Lina Dencik, Joanna Redden, and Emiliano Treré, explores new questions at the intersection of datafication and participation. Based on papers presented at the second international Data Justice conference organized by the Data Justice Lab, the Special Section brings together six exciting contributions that collectively investigate practices, structures, and constraints of civic engagement in a datafied society. From different disciplinary and geographic perspectives, they discuss the role of citizen voices in data governance; questions of data literacy and understanding; self-organized data audits and data production; participatory institutions, as well as the wider social and political context of participation. 

We invite you to read these articles that published in the International Journal of Communication on May 18, 2023. Please log into to read the papers of interest. We look forward to your feedback! 

Civic Participation in the Datafied Society—Introduction
Arne Hintz, Lina Dencik, Joanna Redden, Emiliano Treré 

Participatory Governance in the Digital Age: From Input to Oversight 
Rikki Dean

Citizen Data Audits in the Contemporary Sensorium 
Katherine M. A. Reilly, Esteban Morales   

A Democratic Approach to Digital Rights: Comparing Perspectives on Digital Sovereignty on the City Level 
Paola Pierri, Elizabeth Calderón Lüning

Data Citizenship: Data Literacies to Challenge Power Imbalance Between Society and “Big Tech” 
Elinor Carmi, Simeon Yates

Another Infrastructure Is Possible: Grassroots Citizen Sensing and Environmental Data Justice in Colombia 
Carlos Barreneche, Andres Lombana-Bermudez

Understanding Civic Participation and Realizing Data Justice 
Natalie Fenton

Larry Gross, Editor 
Kady Bell-Garcia, Managing Editor
Chi Zhang, Managing Editor, Special Sections
Arne Hintz, Lina Dencik, Joanna Redden, and Emiliano Treré, Guest Editors

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