“Why Propagations and Replications are the Fuel for Big Data and Why Social Sciences Should Reinvent Themselves to Face This Challenge”

Prof. Dr. Dominique Boullier, EPFL, DHI
Dominique Boullier is a sociologist whose current research focuses on how to design a meme tracker and the theory that accounts for replication processes. Through his work, he crafts a theory of digital traces from likes to comments, from memes to Internet of Things. He argues those should be considered as vibrations or replications, a third kind of social entities, besides “society” and “opinion”.
Source: https://people.epfl.ch/cgi-bin/people?id=264553&op=research&lang=en&cvlang=en

“Data, Visibility and Justice: Integrating Rights and Freedoms Across Information Societies”

By Asst. Prof. L.E.M. (Linnet) Taylor, Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology, and Society (TILT)

Dr. Taylor research deals with the interface between big data, rights and democratic representation worldwide. Her work looks at how people are represented through digital data, and particularly at social and economic inclusion and exclusion through data. She looks at these problems in particular environments including the development and humanitarian response sectors, smart cities and living labs, and more broadly in the public sphere in countries worldwide.

She currently leads the ERC-funded Global Data Justice project, which seeks to identify common understandings amongst people worldwide about what constitutes just treatment in relation to data technologies. The Data Justice team of researchers will conduct fieldwork to understand how people experience the growing role of data as a social and policy tool, whether existing legal and rights systems reflect their understanding of data technologies? risks and benefits, and what governance gaps need to be filled. We aim to compare differing views across regions and cultures, and to draw on these to produce a concept of data justice that can provide the tools for thinking about and governing data technologies as a global phenomenon. Source: https://www.tilburguniversity.edu/webwijs/show/l.e.m.taylor.htm

“Analogue or Digital? Philosophizing after the end of Philosophy”

Prof. Dr. Walther Ch. Zimmerli, Humboldt Universität Berlin – Collegium Helveticum

Walther Ch. Zimmerli, philosopher, is considered to be one of the leading European representatives of a pragmatically orientated “applied philosophy”, the fundamental insights of which originate in both philosophical hermeneutics and analytical philosophy. His theory of technologization has succeeded in shedding a new light on the debates concerning postmodernism, scientification and globalization. His main fields of expertise include philosophical aspects of Artificial Intelligence of the robotics, theory of networks, genetic engineering as well as of the future of work, the new economy and philosophy of time

Prof. Zimmerli is Honorary Professor “Mind and Technology” at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and EURIAS Senior Research Fellow at the Swiss Institute for Advanced Study Collegium Helveticum (CH) and in this capacity also Visiting Professor at the ETH Zuerich. In the context of the CH-overall topic “Digital Societies” he is working on a monograph “To Know is to Make. A Transdisciplinary Theory of the Digital Civilization”. He is member of different academies and learned societies including the German (Acatech) and the Swiss Academy of Technical Sciences (SATW), the International Academy of Arts and Sciences (WAAS), and after having served for five years as member of the Managing Board of DAAD he still is member of the Executive Committee of the Inter University Center (IUC) Dubrovnik. Source: https://collegium.ethz.ch/en/about-us/staff/prof-dr-walther-ch-zimmerli/

Dr. André Ourednik, Université de Neuchâtel – Swiss Federal Archives

André Ourednik is data scientist, essayist and narrative fiction writer of novels of socio-technological anticipation. He holds a PhD in the Doctoral Program Architecture and Sciences of the City (EDAR) of the EPFL and a Master of Arts in the fields of geography, philosophy and mathematics for the social sciences. He has worked in cartography and dynamic multi-agent modelling of the lived space. As research associate at the Swiss Federal Archives, he analyses and visualises textual and quantitative data. He teaches on the concept of nature at the College of Humanities of the EPFL and on the visual representation of geographic spaces at the University of Neuchâtel.
His latest novel, Omniscience (La Baconnière, 2017), confessions of a data scientist, draws a metaphysical satyr of the data civilization.

Website: https://ourednik.info 

Prof. Alrik Thiem, University of Lucerne

Alrik Thiem is Swiss National Science Foundation Professor of Political Science at the University of Lucerne (Switzerland), where his primary work focuses on the development and application of empirical research and evaluation methods, including quantitative, qualitative and mixed-approach techniques, data analytics and questions of causal inference. Specifically, Thiem’s research centres around configurational comparative methods (CCMs), the most prominent of which is Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA). In this connection, he also carries out consultancy projects on the use of CCMs for applied research teams or international organizations.

In addition, Alrik Thiem has a strong interest in questions of research design more broadly defined as well as meta-scientific topics such as publication bias and research ethics. Empirically, he has done work in the area of European foreign, security and defence policy. Last but not least, he occupies himself with possibilities to improve the teaching of empirical research methods and data analytics at all levels of higher education, using computational innovations and graphical tools. Recent work of his has appeared in international periodicals such the American Journal of Evaluation, Comparative Political Studies, Political Analysis, Sociological Methodology and Sociological Methods & Research.

Source: http://www.alrik-thiem.net/

Dr. Charlotte Cabasse-Mazel, DHC EPFL-UNIL

Charlotte Cabasse-Mazel is now the Executive Director of the  Digital Humanities Center, jointly launched by the University of Lausanne (UniL) and the Polytechnical School of Lausanne (EPFL). 

Charlotte Cabasse-Mazel holds a PhD in Geography and Science and Technologies Studies from the University of Paris-Est, where she studied at the Laboratoire Techniques, Territoires et Sociétés (LATTS), at Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées. She is interested in the ways in which practices and methodologies of data science transform production of knowledge and interdisciplinary collaboration, as well as  scientific personae and trajectories within the academic institution.

Her PhD research focused on the creation of hybrid communities and the transformation of subjects (both resident/expert) and space, facing risk of natural disasters in the Bay Area of San Francisco. Previously researcher at EPFL, Switzerland, she worked on research projects questioning the definition of “science”, “society”, “future” and “risk”. She also participated to join research-action project with UN Agencies (ISRD, WHO) in Madagascar.

Before going back to graduate school, she was a civil servant in French Embassy in South Africa and an NGO project coordinator for Aide Médicale Internationale (AMI) in Afghanistan and Indonesia. She also worked as a web and freelance journalist, having collaborated with French local and national newspapers.

She received her MA in Cultural Geography from Université de Reims, France; and MA and BA in Information and Communications Sciences from Université de la Sorbonne, Paris, France

source: https://bids.berkeley.edu/people/charlotte-cabasse

Ms. Diana Alvarez, ETHZ, CAAD
Diana is researcher at the Chair of CAAD at the Future Cities Laboratory, interdisciplinary research program of the Singapore ETH Centre. Currently she is involved in “A Quantum City” research group. This research questions the role of information technology in the engendering of new possibilities out of the current urban generic condition. Source: https://www.caad.arch.ethz.ch/blog/diana/

Mr. Leonardo Impett, Max-Planck-Institute for Art History, Bibliotheca Hertziana Rome
Leonardo’s research focuses on Aby Warburg’s Bilderatlas, the ‘algorithm’ of Pathosformel, and the advances in computer vision necessary to automate and extend Warburg’s project. Specifically, this involves the generalisation of Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) trained on photographs to be able to semantically decode artworks. He completed his undergraduate and masters engineering degrees in Cambridge, where he remains a member of the Rainbow Research Group under Prof. Alan Blackwell. He is a Member of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA).  Source: http://www.culingtec.uni-leipzig.de/ESU_C_T/node/844Domini


Luc Henry, Scientific Advisor to the Presidency of the EPFL

Luc Henry has spent the past ten years exploring science in various ways and places around Europe. He is a chemist turned immunologist turned journalist turned science policy advisor. In 2014, he co-founded the DIY science initiative Hackuarium, and in 2016 he launched the Science Booster, the first crowdfunding channel dedicated to science projects in Switzerland. As a science journalist, he wrote regularly for The Conversation and was the managing editor for the magazine Technologist for a while. He now spends a majority of his time as a scientific advisor to the President of EPFL. Luc holds a DPhil in chemical biology from the University of Oxford.

Dr. Daniel Gatica-Pérez- EPFL

Dr. Gatica Perez is Professeur Titulaire at EPFL and director the Social Computing Group at Idiap., He is a faculty member of the School of Engineering (STI) and the College of Humanities (CDH), where I am member of the Digital Humanities Institute (DHI).

His research integrates theories and methods from ubiquitous computing, social media, machine learning, and social sciences to understand human behavior in daily life and to create applications for social good. Gatica Perez’s current research interests include: Mobile crowdsourcing and social media analytics for social good, Crowdsourcing for cities, Social video analytics, with focus on conversational behavior, Ubiquitous computing in face-to-face interaction, Analysis of ancient Maya hieroglyphic collections.

His recent research has been supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation, the Swiss Commission for Technology and Innovation, the European Commission, and industry partners including Nokia, NTT, and Swiss startups.

Emannuele Massaro, HERUS, EPFL.  ISI Foundation, Italy                                                 

Emanuele is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne. His research interests span the areas of network science, multilayer systems, epidemic modeling and big data analytics. He received both his Bachelor (2006) and his Master (2009) in Environmental Engineering from the University of Florence.  He then received a Ph.D. in Complex Systems and Nonlinear Dynamics in 2014 from the Dept. of Information Engineering and Dept. of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Florence. After defending his PhD thesis, he joined the Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering Carnegie Mellon University as a Postdoctoral Associate (March 2014), working jointly with the Risk and Decision Science Team of US Army Corps of Engineer. His main contribution was to merge the concept of resilience, as defined in the field of engineering with standard epidemiological models, with the goal of quantifying the resilience of large scale epidemic outbreaks. From 2014 to 2016 he has been employed as Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the SENSEable City Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In this role, he was focused on fundamental and applied research that relates to quantifying, modeling and predicting human behavior within urban environments. More broadly, he worked in a highly collaborative fashion with the lab’s multidisciplinary team, external research groups and industrial partners on topics including mobility, social interactions, economic activity and epidemic modeling. Source:  http://www.emanuelemassaro.com/bio.html