Digital Media Lab

Digital Media Lab

The Digital Media Lab at the Munich Center for Technology in Society integrates approaches from social sciences, humanities and computer science with a special focus on science and technology studies (STS). We theoretically and empirically investigate digital transformation processes in various domains of society, provide expertise and policy advice for digital infrastructure and platform initiatives and projects, and explore alternative ways of making these processes more democratic and responsible.

Our projects research digitalization through the lens of material and relational approaches and understand it as a permanent entanglement of different actors, practices, technologies, regulations and cultures. By applying a wide variety of qualitative, digital and inventive methods, including ethnographic approaches, code analysis and mappings, we work on s topics along the thematic axes of infrastructure, control and creativity:

First, we investigate digital infrastructures and look at how numerous different local sites and practices are integrated into large technological systems. Our current research projects are focusing on European public service platforms and European migration and border management.

Second, we explore digital forms of governance, control and resistance. Our current projects include research on algorithmic accountability and epistemic transparency in artificial intelligence (AI), predictive analytics and policing, data protection and privacy in the age of big data as well as on platform politics and recommender publics.

Third, we analyze the unfolding of new modes of design and creativity through engagement with digital technologies. Our current research projects are investigating problem-making and -solving in hackathons, the materialization of new forms of aesthetics in art-based virtual reality (VR) and the intersection of epistemic and artistic practices in co-design and research creation projects.

Concrete forms of research engagement include the involvement in the design processes of recommender systems in the Bavarian Broadcasting Company (BR), the active participation in the unfolding of problems and solutions during Hackathons, and the collaboration with artists in the creation of media and VR-based art.