Gabriella "Biella" Coleman on Thu, 24 Dec 2015 05:02:47 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Hackademia summer school, application due Jan 4th, funding available

   The application deadline for the hacker studies summer school is fast
   approaching. Please share widely. Thanks!
   All best,


   Call For Participants

   Hackademia: empirical studies in computing cultures

   A Digital Cultures Research Lab (DCRL) Summer School

   August 28^th - September 2^nd, 2016

   Leuphana University

   Curated by

   Paula Bialski, Leuphana University

   Gabriella Coleman, McGill University

   Marcell Mars, Leuphana University


   Studying digital media today means studying those
   technologists--hackers, security resarchers, game developers, system
   administrators, and designers--who create and maintain the digital
   worlds we live in. How much agency lies in the hands of programmers,
   coders, and engineers to create our digital worlds is still up for
   debate, yet this much is true: various hacking and related subcultures
   form critical nodes of practice that help shape and condition the
   contemporary technologies we use everyday. Whether it is an analyst or
   coder implementing algorithms at a large financial institution, a group
   of designers working on improving the user interface for a
   cryptographic tool, a privacy team securing a browser, a developer
   coding her own app, cryptographers working on an open source anoymized
   system, a programmer working on a p2p file-sharing platform, hackers
   buying and selling zero days in a grey market, a team of system
   administrators at Google working to scale up services, a
   journalist-coder developing visualization tools, indie game developers
   seeking to write a politically minded game, or a hacker-leaker
   whistleblowing to salavage privacy - all have something to say about
   how digital technology can and should be created.

   These technology workers/experts are now central to every field of
   social, political, and economic import. They secure our communications
   networks; shape the design and portals we use to connect to our banks,
   our friends, our loved ones, our colleagues, our business partners;
   inform us about the activities of our governments; design novel
   currencies; exfiltrate intellectual property and proof of wrongdoing
   from corporate actors; offer us alternative ways of organizing our
   political voices whether through political projects or games; function
   as conduits and warriors between nations; and allow us to confront the
   laws we don't like - through democratic engagements, as in the Free
   Software movement, or tools that enable outright circumvention.

   This is an ideal time to understand and ultimately appraise their
   activities, actions, their desires, and intentions. While an increasing
   number of scholars - ethnographers, cultural anthropologists,
   sociologists, and media historians - are undertaking the study of
   hacker cultures, there are many methodological questions to pose and
   explore: How much technical knowledge is necessary to study the worlds
   of computing and programming?  How does one gain access to secret nooks
   of hacking or corporate sites - whether a security company, gaming
   outfit, or blackhat computer forum - where codes, designers, and
   hackers labor? How is the study of hackers similar and different to the
   study of other experts such as scientists? As participant observers,
   how can we fully understand the engineering culture of the hackers we
   are studying, and what shortcuts in our methods must be taken in order
   to create an understanding?

   Who Should Apply?

   This summer school invites doctoral students in the field of
   ethnography, cultural anthropology, media studies, software studies,
   sociology, science, technology studies, history, or other, who are
   currently working on a dissertation on the life-worlds, practices,
   cultures, or platforms of hackers. Hackers here are understood broadly
   as programmers, coders, pirates, and computer engineers of all shapes
   and forms - and do not necessarily have to be engaged in illegal or
   subversive activity or self identify as hackers. Applicants who are
   struggling with field entry, are learning to code, or seek to expand
   their methods, are particularly welcome.

   Who Will Attend?

   This summer school will provide a dialogue between hackers and
   academics. As such, we will additionally invite a number of hackers,
   coders, programmers, and technologists. These guests will lead sessions
   around the topic of field entrance, knowledge transfer, work
   organization and hacker communication practices, feminist critiques,
   and standards/protocols. Keynote speakers will also provide evening
   lectures, and help lead sessions.

   Where and when will this take place?

   The Hackademia summer school will take place at the Digital Cultures
   Research Lab (DCRL), Leuphana University in Luneburg, Germany (30
   minutes away from Hamburg), between August 28^th - September 2^nd,

   How to apply:

   Please submit your CV along with a 500-word abstract of your
   dissertation, and a 500-word explanation on why you would like to
   attend this summer school. The deadline for applications for the summer
   school is January 4th, 2016. Please email your applications (compile
   into one PDF) to

   All applicants will be informed about the selection of participants in

   The working language of the summer school will be English; therefore, a
   sufficient understanding of English is expected.

   There is no participation fee. The organizers will cover accommodation
   costs. We have a limited amount of need-based travel funding available.
   Please indicate in your application letter if you wish to apply for
   travel funding.

   For further information on the DCRL, please visit:

Gabriella Coleman
Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy
Department of Art History & Communication Studies
McGill University
853 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, PQ
H3A 0G5

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