Co-Building Worlds: Data Capitalism and Other Stories

| Curator | Performative Presentation and conference paper | 2016 | Data Publics conference, Goldsmiths College & Gasworks Gallery, London |

As part of the PostHuman Unit for NeuroCapitalism (PHUNC) project in collaboration with Dr Cecilia Wee, “Co-Building Worlds: Data Capitalism and Other Stories” was a performative conference paper presented at the Data Publics conference led by Goldsmiths University of London. The paper focused on data-capitalism and was delivered at Gasworks Gallery, London. Using the collaborative storyworlding method, the project collected personal and intimate experiences in the form of life writing from a worldwide network of PHUNC affiliates, referred to as “researchers” who worked in arts and cultural contexts as well as in think-tanks, policy-based organisations and higher education.

The aim was to open up the opaque term of data-capitalism and “researchers” included: Jamie Allen & Johannes Bruder at the Critical Media Lab Basel, Hannah Barton, Chris Downs & Gemma Lord, Joseph DeLappe, Daniel C. Howe, Stephanie Hankey & Marek Tuszynski, Tactical Technology Collective, Simone C. Niquille, Caroline Sinders, Cassie Thornton & Elizabeth Coughlin, Sara Watson.

The group were invited to provide a short example of data-capitalism and started with the questions, what are the experiences of living in a data capitalist world? What daily compromises do we make? How might focusing on these inner realities expand knowledge of data capitalism?  ​The contributions ranged from the highly personal to the professional, and were assembled into a play set in a museum archive of the future. It featured two curators conducting archival research for an exhibition on the historic era of “data-capitalism”. The script is a conversation between the two cultural workers discussing the scope and limitations of certain sources, artworks, and examples.