Digital Governance in the Anthropocene : The Rise of the Correlational Machine
Chapter from the book: Chandler D. & Fuchs C. 2019. Digital Objects, Digital Subjects: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Capitalism, Labour and Politics in the Age of Big Data.
This chapter is organised in four sections. The first section introduces digital governance in terms of the governance of effects rather than causation, focusing on the work of Ulrich Beck and Bruno Latour in establishing the problematic of contingent interaction, rather than causal depth, as key to emergent effects, which can be unexpected and catastrophic. The second section considers in more depth how digital governance puts greater emphasis on relations of interaction rather than on ontologies of being, and links the methodological approach of digital governance closely to actor network assumptions that disavow structures of causation. The final two sections analyse how correlation works to reveal new agencies and processes of emergence and how new technologies have been deployed in this area, providing some examples of how the shift from causal relations to sensing effects has begun to alter governmental approaches