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Algorithmically embodied emissions: the environmental harm of everyday life information in digital culture
University of Borås, Faculty of Librarianship, Information, Education and IT. (MISTRA Environmental Communication)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8293-8208
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala.
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Uppsala.
2022 (English)In: Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Conceptions of Library and Information Science, Oslo Metropolitan University, May 29 - June 1, 2022: Information Research, 27 (Special issue), Borås: University of Borås , 2022, article id colis2224Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Sustainable development
According to the author(s), the content of this publication falls within the area of sustainable development.
Abstract [en]

Introduction. This conceptual paper introduces the notion of algorithmically embodied emissions to highlight how everyday choices facilitated by commercial algorithmic information systems such as commercial search engines, social media and recommender systems contribute to the climate crisis and other forms of environmental destruction.

Method/Analysis. The proposed concept is developed by integrating terminology from the fields of information studies, critical algorithm studies and environmental impact assessment, and by examining a strategic selection of examples.

Results. Through the examples, the authors show that semantic interpretation of queries as well as the information architecture involve normative dimensions with implications for the climate crisis and other forms of environmental destruction.

Conclusions. The paper proposes a terminological framework that integrates conceptual considerations from environmental impact assessment, environmental communication, information studies and critical algorithm studies to articulate how algorithmic information systems are co-constitutive of environmental harm. The paper further suggest to extend environmental impact assessment to include algorithmic harms in order to take into account how responsibility and accountability are distributed among different actors with profoundly different conditions and opportunities to exercise them.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Borås: University of Borås , 2022. article id colis2224
National Category
Information Studies
Research subject
Library and Information Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-28904DOI: 10.47989/colis2224ISI: 000890368900024Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85144909142OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-28904DiVA, id: diva2:1709438
Conference
11th International Conference on Conceptions of Library and Information Science, Oslo, Norway, May 29 - June 1, 2022.
Available from: 2022-11-08 Created: 2022-11-08 Last updated: 2023-10-12Bibliographically approved

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Publisher's full textScopushttp://informationr.net/ir/27-SpIssue/CoLIS2022/colis2224.html

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Haider, Jutta

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