Network of Excellence in Internet Science (Multidisciplinarity and its Implications, P.Dini, LSE)
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

Network of Excellence in Internet Science (Multidisciplinarity and its Implications, P.Dini, LSE)

on

  • 312 views

The Network of Excellence in Internet Science aims to achieve a deeper multidisciplinary understanding of the Internet as a societal and technological artefact....

The Network of Excellence in Internet Science aims to achieve a deeper multidisciplinary understanding of the Internet as a societal and technological artefact.
More information: http://internet-science.eu/
Twitter: @i_scienceEU

Statistics

Views

Total Views
312
Views on SlideShare
301
Embed Views
11

Actions

Likes
0
Downloads
0
Comments
0

2 Embeds 11

http://www.internet-science.eu 10
http://internet-science.eu 1

Accessibility

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Microsoft PowerPoint

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment
  • •  Nice to be here. •  My original background is aerospace engineering, then physics, electronics, media, and now social science. But as I picked up new disciplinary perspectives I did not give up the “hard” science. •  In particular, in EINS I will be working on mapping the algebraic structure of cell metabolic systems to distributed computation models, which are arguably of relevance to the Internet -- past, present and future. • To me interdisciplinarity is not about blending different disciplines together. It is a deeper process, which begins with the respect for the scholarship traditions of each discipline and with the recognition that different epistemologies are at play. • As a result my approach to interdisiciplinarity is a little schizophrenic: I do a lot of context switching: whole APIs have to be loaded and unloaded when switching from social constructivism to algebraic automata theory. •  In addition to advancing the state of the art in bio-computing, my objective in EINS is to make a contribution to the collaborative construction of an INTER-EPISTEMOLOGICAL framework, meaning to how different disciplines do or could construct knowledge -- also collaboratively -- in the Future Internet. • The following slides give a high-level view of my starting point in this endeavour.
  • I
  • • The starting point for me in interdisciplinary research is to clear up the main epistemological dimensions, which can reduced to the two sets of binary opposites: objectivism -- subjectivism: these are the two columns individualism -- collectivism: these are the two rows • The two rows, however, are heavily overloaded. They can also mean free agency vs. structuralist/normative determinism Induction/positivism/empiricism vs. deduction/rationalism • The names shown are just an example, many more could be added: Foucault, Heidegger, Habermas, … . Mouffe’s agonistic pluralism permeates the whole map, by definition. • A dimension that is not shown is the Conflict-Regulation axis. I have a 3D version of this diagram but 6 minutes are not enough to do it justice! :-)
  • •  How can we instantiate this general framework in the field of ICT? •  I propose that the structural and “mechanistic” view of ICT can best be related to the physical and natural world, where Natural Science can provide inspiration for new algorithms and architectures. •  By contrast, the view of ICT as media of communications is best informed by social science theories, which themselves fall along a wide spectrum of epistemological, ontological, and methodological possibilities, as we saw in the previous slide. • In this way, the same ICT is compatible with both the objectivist and the subjectivist views of the world, shown here as roughly occurring at two different levels of the stack. • In this picture it is clear that my position is to keep Natural Science and Social Science separate. Theoretical attempts to join them, in my opinion, are not going to be successful any time soon. But the presence of ICT with its many facets largely diffuses the problem. • How can we add some dynamism to this picture? We can do this with a focus on language.
  • • This is a rather ambitious picture that aims to highlight the tight interdisciplinary feedbacks characterising ICTs, and specifically between the medium and the message. • Rather than addressing whether or not the medium is the message, however, this diagram highlights their difference -- but shows that they can be connected nonetheless. •  In the naturalistic (objectivist) tradition, media are technologies. The formal systems through which technologies are expressed can be transformed between each other, a process that we can call for the sake of convenience “compilation”. As we move from the right towards the left, we “reverse-compile” technologies into more abstract forms of expression, eventually reaching formal languages. • Assuming we can cross the boundary to natural language, the medium gradually morphs into the message. Language processes then support the social construction of our world as we know it. • This becomes content, or cultural production more generally and routed through the pipe. •  Inside the pipe, the hermeneutic (subjectivist) tradition organises cultural production. • Finally, critical theory of technology teaches us that the cultural values thus constructed influence the technology we build, thereby closing the loop.
  • • The discourse analysis or social constructivist view of SOCIO-TECHNICAL processes can be enriched with an ECONOMIC dimension by relying on Economic Anthropology.
  • • This diagram encapsulates the more “universal” aspects of economic systems, according to Gudeman. • We see that Economy can be understood to be made of the Community and the Market realms, but Gudeman breaks it down further into 4 domains of value. • I am suggesting that these ideas could enrich the Internet Science frameworks we will be developing. • Clearly, Political Economy and Institutional Economics are very important too, but I don’t have time to address them here!
  • • Having hopefully explained how different epistemological perspectives can coexist in ways that are mutually enriching, as long as each leaves room for the other, I now go back to the structural and objectivist view of Internet Science. • I have been working on the concept of Interaction Computing, which can be seen as a way to formalise bottom-up self-organising behaviour that is responsive to user inputs and to the context. • The inspiration comes from biological ecosystems, in the large, or cell metabolic systems, in the small. • The main point is that the control of behaviour by top-down engineering design requires two elements: the presence of formal systems, and the energy to drive them. • In natural ecosystems the energy comes from the sun, whereas the “formal” system comes from physical law. • In the Internet of the future, the energy will come from the users, like today. In order to make it self-organising, at least in some respects, the formal systems will need to share some common structural properties. I suggest that these properties are algebraic and that they include an interaction mechanism that supports the propagation of signals through the digital medium.
  • • Having hopefully explained how different epistemological perspectives can coexist in ways that are mutually enriching, as long as each leaves room for the other, I now go back to the structural and objectivist view of Internet Science. • I have been working on the concept of Interaction Computing, which can be seen as a way to formalise bottom-up self-organising behaviour that is responsive to user inputs and to the context. • The inspiration comes from biological ecosystems, in the large, or cell metabolic systems, in the small. • The main point is that the control of behaviour by top-down engineering design requires two elements: the presence of formal systems, and the energy to drive them. • In natural ecosystems the energy comes from the sun, whereas the “formal” system comes from physical law. • In the Internet of the future, the energy will come from the users, like today. In order to make it self-organising, at least in some respects, the formal systems will need to share some common structural properties. I suggest that these properties are algebraic and that they include an interaction mechanism that supports the propagation of signals through the digital medium.
  • • Having hopefully explained how different epistemological perspectives can coexist in ways that are mutually enriching, as long as each leaves room for the other, I now go back to the structural and objectivist view of Internet Science. • I have been working on the concept of Interaction Computing, which can be seen as a way to formalise bottom-up self-organising behaviour that is responsive to user inputs and to the context. • The inspiration comes from biological ecosystems, in the large, or cell metabolic systems, in the small. • The main point is that the control of behaviour by top-down engineering design requires two elements: the presence of formal systems, and the energy to drive them. • In natural ecosystems the energy comes from the sun, whereas the “formal” system comes from physical law. • In the Internet of the future, the energy will come from the users, like today. In order to make it self-organising, at least in some respects, the formal systems will need to share some common structural properties. I suggest that these properties are algebraic and that they include an interaction mechanism that supports the propagation of signals through the digital medium.

Network of Excellence in Internet Science (Multidisciplinarity and its Implications, P.Dini, LSE) Network of Excellence in Internet Science (Multidisciplinarity and its Implications, P.Dini, LSE) Presentation Transcript

  •   Interdisciplinarity and Internet Science: Some Concepts and Possibilities
  • Overview EINS Kick-off Meeting • Interdisciplinary and inter-epistemological framework • Translations and flows • Economic Anthropology (and Political Economy & Institutional Economics, too!) • Back to the structural view: algebraic basis of self-organisation
  • Reference Architecture EINS Kick-off Meeting (Based on Hollis, 1994)
  • ICT as Inter-Epistemological Bridge EINS Kick-off Meeting Computer Science Social Science Natural Science Cellullar processes Evolution Constraints & enablements Market pressure Machine Algebraic structure … what about ICT Design ? http://math.about.com/od/geometry/ss/platonic.htm Digital media Communications ICT Synthesis ICT Use
  • Technology, Language, and Culture EINS Kick-off Meeting Naturalistic tradition constructs the media Technology is not value-free! Media Which are compiled into other media Language as medium of communications constructs networks of commitments that support economic and cultural production Hermeneutic tradition organises cultural production, which influences the construction of the media
  • Economic Anthropology (Gudeman, 2001) EINS Kick-off Meeting • ‘ Economy constructed through folk models and metaphors’ • ‘ Theoretical writings in Western economics as cultural constructions’ • ‘ Economy consists of two realms, community and market. Both facets make up economy, for humans are motivated by social fulfilment, curiosity, and the pleasure of mastery, as well as instrumental purpose, competition, and the accumulation of gains’ • ‘ The motor of capitalism is profit-making, but even the most market-driven actor -- the global corporation -- mixes the two realms and relies on the presence of communal relations and resources for its success’
  • Gudeman’s 4 Domains of Value EINS Kick-off Meeting
  • Back to Structure: Energy and Formalisation Metaphors EINS Kick-off Meeting Biological Ecosystem Sun Internet of the future Users Impose as constraints on automata interaction rules Extract regularities in structure and behaviour arising from physical law Formalise as structural & dynamical symmetries (Some of the structural aspects of the) : )
  • EINS Kick-off Meeting
  • EINS Kick-off Meeting