LAHRI Speculative Lunch: The Digital as Method, Tool and Field

An event to explore the politics, ethics and pragmatics inherent in the use of the digital as method, tool and field.

Part of the Leeds Arts and Humanities Research Institute’s 2019-20 Speculative Lunch Series.

Speculative Lunch Conveners:

Rebecca Jarman (School of Languages, Cultures and Societies), Simon Popple (School of Media and Communication) and Timothy Thurston (School of Languages, Cultures and Societies)

Event details:

Digital technologies are rapidly transforming the lives of people around the globe. This is particularly true for marginalised populations where the introduction of new technologies present both empowering opportunities to push back against hegemonic representations as well as threats to a community’s traditions and social fabric.

The democratisation of the digital presents the opportunity of embedding our research at the heart of the communities that it concerns and placing participatory, interdisciplinary methods at the forefront of its strategies. But it also raises urgent questions about the politics, ethics and pragmatics inherent in the use of the digital as method, tool, and field, especially with vulnerable communities. These include:

  1. How best can we use digital methods in response to the challenges faced among marginalised communities, and how can we ensure that the impact of our work is sustainable?

  2. What are the challenges that can arise in the pursuit of interdisciplinary initiatives that adopt creative methodologies and have digital practices? What are the strategies that can best be used to mitigate the difficulties and tensions that can arise with such collaborations?

  3. What limitations are placed on digital research by technical concerns that include data security, server vulnerability, storage and the cost of hosting? How can we ensure that our research and its outputs are sustainable in a highly ephemeral context?

  4. What possibilities exist for integrating these approaches into pedagogical strategies and the professional development of our students?

This speculative lunch will provide an informal setting to discuss some of these questions. 

If you would like to attend this event, please register your interest by emailing the LAHRI administrator.

Places are limited to 16, and are allocated on a first come first served basis. In the event of oversubscription you will be put on a waiting list. A full vegetarian lunch will be provided by the Leeds Arts and Humanities Research Institute.