Epistemic Transformation at the Margins: Resistance to Digitalisation and Datafication within Global Human Rights Advocacy


A post-human “transformation thesis” has emerged which posits that global politics is being radically altered by digital technologies and datafication. There is a polemical tendency to generalise about macro-level revolutions in both the techniques of governance and knowledge production across different political spheres, ranging from international security to development, humanitarianism and human rights. By instead applying a meso-level lens on global politics, this article cautions against excessive generalisations about epistemic transformations. It does so by emphasising the ways in which technological changes are mediated through field-specific struggles. This point is illustrated by demonstrating the absence of a radical data revolution within the field of global human rights advocacy. Through a sociological analysis of leading human rights NGOs and their epistemic cultures, it shows how that the field's humanistic sub-culture limits the adoption of novel digital- and data-centric practices.

Publication DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13600826.2021.1879028
Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities
College of Business and Social Sciences > School of Social Sciences & Humanities > Politics, History and International Relations
Additional Information: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Geography, Planning and Development,Global and Planetary Change
Publication ISSN: 1360-0826
Last Modified: 18 Jun 2024 07:37
Date Deposited: 10 May 2021 12:55
Full Text Link:
Related URLs: https://www.tan ... 26.2021.1879028 (Publisher URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2021-02-03
Published Online Date: 2021-02-03
Accepted Date: 2021-01-01
Authors: Markland, Alistair (ORCID Profile 0000-0003-4867-8673)

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