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February 21 Friday

Surveillance Studies and Constitutional Law, informal workshop, Niklas Eder, Visiting Scholar

  • Friday, February 21, 2020 at 1:00PM - 2:30PM
  • BH Room 405
  • Open To The Yale Community
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The objective of the workshop "Surveillance Studies and Constitutional" Law is to deepen the understanding of surveillance as an object of regulation and constitutional interpretation.

Legal scholars often "black-box" surveillance, meaning that they refrain from assessing the complexity of surveillance processes and their consequences on individuals and on society. Limited understandings of the social and societal effects of surveillance translate into conceptually limited and practically unsuccessful regulatory strategies and interpretative approaches. To provide a better basis for future research in this field, this workshop explores foundational and recent works in Surveillance Studies and revisits constitutional scholars’ engagement with surveillance.

Surveillance Studies is a multi- and interdisciplinary field which explores surveillance broadly and in great depth. Drawing on critical theory, sociology of knowledge and political theory, scholars have developed sophisticated analyses on how surveillance shapes subjectivity and culture and constructs power relations. Confronted with a fast  and significantly changing landscape of surveillance practices, in recent work, scholars have built on influential sociological and philosophical theories of the second half of the 20th century to describe and contextualise the various effects of the encompassing collection and machine learning based analysis of data. While great in analytical potential, up to date, the greatest deficit of Surveillance Studies remains the poor translation of its insights into practical regulatory suggestions and interpretative strategies — a task which constitutional lawyers are best equipped to do. This workshop offers participants inspiration to take on this task and offers a forum to discuss one of Big Data’s great challenges.

Niklas Eder is a doctoral candidate in the programme "Unity and Difference in the European Legal Area" at Humboldt University Berlin, a Visiting Scholar at Columbia Law School and a Visiting Fellow at the ISP. His research focuses on European Constitutional Law, Legal Philosophy, Big Data, Surveillance and Privacy. Niklas has graduated at Humboldt University Berlin, holds a Maîtrise en Droit from Université Paris II, Panthéon Assas, and a LL.M. from King’s College London. Besides his academic work, he is publishing for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

Sponsoring Organization(s)

ISP, TechSoc