Smart cities, robotics, artificial intelligence, medical technologies, the energy transition, sustainable technologies, surveillance capitalism: the current socio-technological transformations and new information and communication technologies affect almost every part of society and of our daily lives. Whether they concern the future of work, equal access to information and services, or the relationship between humans and their technological environment and the governance of technological societies: ethical and political issues concerning technology and the ways in which they challenge our self-understanding are at the core of today’s debates.
Governments, industries, societal organisations and funding institutes increasingly acknowledge the importance of the ethics and politics of technology. This is evident, for instance, from the fact that the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) is searching for a key role of the Social Sciences and Humanities together with the Sciences to engage with social challenges. The Dutch Research Agenda (NWA) also encourages proposals that improve the connection between science and society. And on top of that, the Netherlands Scientific Council for Government Policy, the WRR, is regularly asked by several Ministries to advise on the public values related to Artificial Intelligence and digital technologies. In these and other developments, the need for ethical and political reflection on recent technology and the call for interdisciplinary research and cooperation with various stakeholders resonate.
To answer this call, the University of Amsterdam establishes a platform that strengthens their research in the ethics, politics and governance of technology (including but not limited to AI and information technologies); and contributes to the diverse existing initiatives at the UvA (e.g. the RPAs). UvA researchers take a broad and critical stance towards recent technologies, putting them in the context of social questions, of ethics and politics and investigating the role these technologies play in contemporary societies. Thus, the ethics and politics of technology play a central role in many already existing research projects. The Platform will function as a place to jointly fundamentally and systematically reflect on these issues.
The Platform aims to be a place that brings together existing research projects and initiates new projects and collaborations on the ethics and politics of technology. To develop new initiatives, the Platform will invite scholars, key thinkers and stakeholders from society, government and industry to contribute to the public imagination that is required to address today’s issues of technology. Moreover, the Platform will focus on collaborations with the RPAs and other research initiatives, thereby creating synergies between them. Furthermore, one of the aims of the Platform is to intensify collaborations with external partners from civil society, government and industry.
The Platform connects scholars from all faculties concerned with (aspects of) the ethics, politics and governance of technologies.
Its aim is to strengthen existing related initiatives. Therefore, it collaborates with the AI University Professors, and the Research Priority Areas of Brain and Cognition, Communication, Global Digital Cultures, European Studies, Global Health and Development, Human(e) AI, Information Law and Urban Studies.
The Platform strengthens the connections with the already existing external partners (e.g., Gemeente Amsterdam, Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid), and collaborates with various Institutes at the UvA, such as the IAS.
We would like to expand our network and therefore we would like to hear from you too. If you would like to collaborate with us please send an email to email@example.com.