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Cursus: ME3V21001
Data as Media
Cursus informatie
Studiepunten (EC)7,5
At the end of the course students are able to:
  • identify and explain cultural data practices, based on the relevant academic concepts developed for approaches to datafication and mediatization;
  • develop an understanding of how a media and performance studies perspective can be productive for data studies;
  • conduct a situational data analysis of a cultural or societal phenomenon, exploring how data are produced, circulated and/or operationalized;
  • write a paper that is academically sound and according to academic conventions on the design and results of this analysis.
Priority rules apply to this course. Make sure you register for this course before June 14, 12.00 noon to be considered for enrollment.
The following students are guaranteed a place:
  • BA Media en cultuur/Media and Culture;
  • BA TCS or LAS;
  • pre-master’s students.
Other students will be placed by means of random selection. 

In our data-driven society data are often seen as empirical and therefore neutral or objective phenomena. However, data are constructions, always already constituted in wider assemblages. As such, datafication - the process of turning all aspects of our social and cultural world into data - poses ethical, cultural, and critical challenges that demand reflection. 
This course approaches datafication as a process of mediatization and demonstrates the valuable contribution that media and performance studies can make to the field of data studies. Inspired by the idea of data as situated and principles from the ethics of care, it promotes a critical engagement with data that is also responsible, affective and material (cf Loukisass 2019). More concretely, it examines - through various cases linked to gender, performance, new media and film/television studies - how the media and performance studies perspective on data is productive to discussions about the role of data and algorithms in our culture and society. Students furthermore learn to conduct a situational data analysis, analyzing how data are produced, circulated and/or operationalized.
This is the first course in the specialization Critical Data studies. The aim of this advanced trajectory is to train students to analyze the assemblages that produce, circulate and utilize data in diverse ways. It teaches them to raise critical questions about how datafication shapes and interacts with society and culture.
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