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Message posted on 20/01/2020

REMINDER CfA - 8th STS Italia Conference - Track 29 - Talk, then prototype. Arguing out controversies over digital design processes - Fishbowl discussions

Dear all,

this is a friendly reminder to the abstract submission deadline for the 8th STS Italia conference (February 9, 2020). We are looking forward to abstract submissions to our track Talk, then prototype. Arguing out controversies over digital design processes - Fishbowl Discussions at the
8th STS Italia Conference ?Dis/Entangling Technoscience: Vulnerability, Responsibility and Justice (, June 18 through
20, 2020, Trieste, Italy. The Call for Abstract is enclosed below.

Karoline Krenn – Fraunhofer Institute of Open Communication Systems (FOKUS) Berlin – E-Mail:
Jens Tiemann – Fraunhofer Institute of Open Communication Systems (FOKUS) Berlin – E-Mail:


[Track 29] - Talk, then prototype. Arguing out controversies over digital design processes - Fishbowl Discussions
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Deadline for abstract submission: February 9, 2020

Information technologies solve vital problems but they are also a major source of social anxiety and conflict. In this track we are exploring the feasibility of an actor informed approach to technological design processes as tool to uncover the sociotechnical formation of society. The goal of our track is to show how perspective shapes meaning-making about ICT and underlying ideas on the constitution of societies. Awareness about the multiplicity of perspectives within design processes might have the potential to mitigate sociotechnical vulnerabilities.

The shaping of the digital society is based on technological design decisions. Desired requirements might however vary between different actors, such as developers, engineers, users, civil society actors or politicians. The management of conflicting requirements is a central task, but requires the visibility of different perspectives on technology themselves. In practice, some actors have a more powerful position to initially define requirements. Overlooking conflicts might backlash as technological vulnerabilities.
Examples are conflicts between safety requirements and “light and cheap” design principles, between privacy and comfort requirements of users or between economies of scale and sustainability.

We choose a fishbowl discussion format to confront underlying controversies over design requirements with each other. Such a discussion stands for an ideal sociotechnical design process that provides exchange and critique. Insights won from these discussions might loopback into suggestions how to better organize processes of technology development in general.

This call is open to proposals from different disciplines and fields (such as engineering, design, economics, STS scholars and others) to participate in a multi perspective fishbowl discussion on design requirements in ICT. Fishbowls are a good method for discussing controversial issues. In contrast to regular discussions fishbowls only start with invited discussants selected from proposals, then after an initial phase open up additional discussion seats for the wider session audience and allow for dynamic participation.

Submissions should state positions on requirements in ICT they want to advocate, and name discussants for the fishbowl. Proposals may cover topics for discussion from a single perspective (one discussant required) or already as multi-perspective (several discussants required). Organizers will select and match discussants from proposals.

We are especially interested in proposals from but not limited to areas such as:

Smart City and/or Smart Living applications
Infrastructures to support applications
Privacy Enhancing Technologies

To participate: English abstracts should be
submitted by February, 9 to the conference email address ( and to the emails of convenors' selected track.
Track Convenor(s) will be responsible for reviewing, accepting/rejecting
and organising submissions into their track.

MAY 24, 2020.

Submission (to the conference email address and
to the emails of convenors' selected track) should include:
1. Author
s name and surname, affiliation and email address
2. Presentation title
3. Abstract (less than 300 words)

Next important dates:
February 9, 2020: Deadline for abstract submission
March 2, 2020: Notification of abstract acceptance or rejection
March 29, 2020: Early registration deadline
April 19, 2020: Closing date for registration
May 24, 2020: Publication of the final conference programme
June 18 to 20, 2020: Conference

Please feel free to circulate this announcement widely.

Best regards
Karoline Krenn & Jens Tiemann

Dr. Karoline Krenn

Fraunhofer FOKUS
Kompetenzzentrum Öffentliche IT

Kaiserin-Augusta-Allee 31 | 10589 Berlin
Tel.: +49 (30) 3463 -7117
Fax: +49 (30) 3463 -997117
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