Data Ethics, Governance and Openness
Keywords for research topics within this theme: data management; data sharing; data governance and accountability; ethics; epistemology of data and AI; data justice; bias, discrimination, inequality and divides; open data; public-private intersections; data protection; privacy; regulation; training, skills and education; data-based organising and digital economies; systems, infrastructure and technology development.
This theme is concerned with the study of data practices across different social settings, including the sciences, business, policy and government. We have a strong (but decidedly not exclusive) interest in the study of the use and role of scientific data from biology to health and climate change, and the questions that the embedding of such data across the social fabric raises for, among others, the governance and regulation of data flows. We also investigate the consequences of the 'datafication' and digitalisation of social interactions and relationships; the management and use of data and associated ICT in public and private organisations; the circulation of information in the digital economy and its knowledge politics.
Key to this theme are questions around what constitutes responsible data management, the social reconfigurations associated to the growth of openness movements and initiatives, the role of values in algorithms, and the development and management of research infrastructures.
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Related Centres of Excellence in Exeter
Based at the University of Exeter in the UK, Egenis is committed to providing research of the highest international standard into the nature, historical precedents, and philosophical, social and scientific implications of developments in contemporary biosciences. Also covering the cognitive, biomedical and agricultural sciences, we are interested all of the life sciences' socio-political, ethical, as well as epistemic repercussions. We have pioneered new approaches to the understanding of genomics, stem cell science, symbiosis, model organisms, data-intensive research, systems and synthetic biology, heredity, and microbiology.
We have a strongly interdisciplinary culture, encompassing a range of perspectives from social science, biology, and philosophy. The Egenis membership is engaged in developing and running a wide range of highly innovative, interdisciplinary research projects in cooperation with a range of external partners. This research is characterised by its variety of output modes, impact vectors, and policy potential.
The Data Studies and Knowledge Processing research theme led by Sabina Leonelli is concerned with the functioning and implications of research processes within and beyond the life sciences, both in contemporary practices and in history, and across a wide range of locations. Of particular interest are the ways data, models, hardware, and software are used and circulated, the division of labour and credit systems in science, the nature and practice of co-production and citizen science, the changing role and modes of publishing, and the ways in which knowledge processing and related environments are managed, evaluated, and compared across geographical and disciplinary locations.
The Exeter Data Studies Group is dedicated to the philosophy of data-intensive science and the history and social studies of the lives and journeys of 'big data' in the sciences and beyond.
This work is coordinated by Sabina Leonelli at the University of Exeter, mainly through the generous funding of the European Research Council; and it involves many other researchers and projects funded by the Leverhulme Trust, the Australian Research Council, the UK Economic and Social Research Council, the Turing Institute, and others.