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The Algorithmic Society - Technology, Power, and Knowledge: Book launch, hosted by the VUB Chair in Surveillance Studies

donderdag, 22 april, 2021 - 15:00
Campus: Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering campus
Faculteit: Recht en Criminologie
Bram Visser


Algorithms are increasingly used throughout the private as well as public sector, from criminal justice agencies to health care. It is vital that algorithms are designed and applied in a way that is consistent with the values of social justice, inclusion and solidarity. How can we ensure that algorithms are fair and reasonable, just and unbiased? What solutions can be formulated to mitigate the negative effects of algorithms?

About the book:

We live in an algorithmic society. Algorithms have become the main mediator through which power is enacted in our society. Thisbook brings together three academic fields – Public Administration, Criminal Justice and Urban Governance – into a single conceptual framework, and offers a broad cultural-political analysis of the mechanisms and social implications of algorithmic governance. Reporting from the cutting edge of scientific research, the result is illuminating and useful for understanding the relations between algorithms and power. Topics covered include:

  • Algorithmic governmentality

  • Transparency and accountability

  • Fairness in criminal justice and predictive policing

  • Principles of good digital administration

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the smart city

This book is essential reading for students and scholars of Sociology, Criminology, Public Administration, Political Sciences, and Cultural Theory interested in the integration of algorithms into the governance of society.


  • Rik Peeters (CIDE Mexico City) & Marc Schuilenburg (VU Amsterdam) – The Algorithmic Society

  • Marlies van Eck (Leiden University) – Towards Principles of Good Digital Administration

  • Rosamunde Van Brakel (VU Brussel) – Rethinking Predictive Policing

  • Michael McGuire (University of Surrey) – Sense in the (Smart) City

  • David Murakami Wood (Queen’s University Kingston) – Discussant

For all questions related to the launch, please contact Bram Visser (bram.visser@vub.be).
We are looking forward to welcoming you all!


 The seminar will take place on 22 April 2021 from 15h00 until 16h30 (note: Brussels Time) via Teams. Registration is free but necessary. After registration, you will receive the link to the online seminar. Registration can be done below. Please keep in mind that the seminar will be recorded and made visible on our website afterwards. 

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