SFB 1187 ›Medien der Kooperation‹ an der Universität Siegen
Lecture Series „Data Practices“ – Tobias Röhl (Siegen): „Distributing Accountability. Data Practices in Public Transport“
Dienstag, 27. November 2018, 18:00-20:00 Uhr

Tobias Röhl (Siegen) on "Distributing Accountability. Data Practices in Public Transport"

In the field of public transport questions of accountability are often raised. This becomes especially apparent in the case of breakdowns and other disruptions. Actors in and beyond transport companies make themselves accountable and are held accountable by others: Who is responsible for the disruption? Who can be held accountable for repair? Who is in charge of organising repair and other means of rectifying disruptions? Drawing on STS and ethnomethodology, I will argue for a praxeological concept of accountability. Accountability is not a fixed state of individual or collective actors but a practically accomplished and technologically mediated relationship. Transport companies rely on various data practices and data infrastructures that distribute accountability between different actors within and beyond the organisation. Following this distributed normative work shows that data (practices) are the object of negotiations and conflicts between various actors. What is at stakes is the scale and scope of data and media. 
The lecture series on “Data Practices” explores data “in motion”, both theoretically, empirically and methodology. The proliferation of data-intensive media requires researchers to develop their conceptual vocabulary and socio-technical understanding of data production, calculation and their underlying practices and infrastructures. Throughout the lecture series, we ask how a praxeological account can enable us to account for the movement and transformation of data. We consider data practices as those practices involved in the making, calculation, storage, accounting and valuation of data among others which are socio-material and entangled with infrastructures. The lecture series is jointly organised by the DFG graduate school “Locating Media” and the DFG cooperative research centre “Media of Cooperation”.


Universität Siegen
Campus Herrengarten
AH - A 217/18
Herrengarten 3
57072 Siegen




Prof. Dr. Carolin Gerlitz

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