Dynamic Coalition on Gender and Internet Governance
Round Table - Circle - 90 Min
The Dynamic Coalition on Gender and Internet Governance (DC GIG) works towards integrating gender into the internet governance space and bring in the diverse perspectives of women and queer and trans persons. A session dedicated to the DC GIG, the intersection of gender and internet governance is crucial to the larger conversation on digital inclusion.
This year, the DC GIG session will be used as a space for knowledge-sharing and learning on body, data, and gender. This will directly tie in to the priority themes of the 2019 IGF; Data Governance, Digital Inclusion, and Security, Safety, Stability & Resilience.
Dr. Anja Kovacs from the Internet Democracy Project will be presenting some very exciting research on body and data, on how the meaning of body is expanding and being reconfigured with respect to data, and the fluidity between the two in the current digital age at the DC GIG session. There will be three discussants who will engage with the research and bring in their perspectives as members of different DCs as well as academics working on internet, gender, digital politics and policy.
This session will be live tweeted so that the learnings from the session are also publicly captured and available. This would be a more accessible way to take the conversation forward, both immediately as well as on a longer run.
Bishakha Datta - Point of View, India
Smita Vanniyar - Point of View, India
Baldeep Grewal - Universität Würzburg, Germany
Dr. Anja Kovacs - Internet Democracy Project
Prof. KS Park - Open Net Korea
Ms. Kyoungmi Oh - Open Net Korea
Dr. Ruhiya Seward - International Development Research Centre
Ms. Chenai Chair - Research ICT Africa
GOAL 5: Gender Equality
The DC GIG session will be used as a space for knowledge-sharing and learning with Dr. Anja Kovacs presenting research on gender, body and data. The following questions will be discussed:
1. What are/should be the rights and responsibilities for individuals in determining the use of their personal data, and what right do individuals have to determine their own digital identity?
2. To what extent, and how, should accountability, fairness, explainability, suitability and representativity apply to the use of data and and algorithms, and how can governance frameworks address these issues in a way that enhances increases inclusion?
3. What role can the implementation of the principles of safety by design, privacy by design and by default as a principle play to secure human rights and achieve increased safety? How can consumer rights and their capacity to protect themselves and their data be reinforced?
Anja Kovacs was the main speaker on the panel and presented research on complicating the relationship on datafication of bodies. The four other speakers acted as discussants and took the conversation forward by contributing perspectives from political science, legislation and IT. Many audience members engaged with comments and questions about how datafication of bodies can be reworked by putting personhood at the center. Anja argued against an understanding of data as oil or a disembodied resource, and encouraged a reading of bodies’ translation into data that looked at structural harms of data beyond privacy.
A final input by Smita prompted us to think about how the binary code of technology can accommodate non-binary persons. A radical idea that emerged from the discussion was that not being in the data is not necessarily a bad thing and flying under the radar could actually be a productive way of playing an unfair system.
The session challenges in the way of using data for the benefit of people, but data collection seldom keeps people at the center. Thinking about bodies behind data with special emphasis on gender and marginalised underserved communities.
The policy recommendations include making spaces like IGF inclusive and safe for people of other genders by ensuring that data collection, especially gender specific data, is only collected if necessary, and by ensuring inclusive facilities in the IGF and NRI spaces. This also includes having inclusive gender options at registration to not just ensure participation but also to push session organisers to think beyond the binary of man and women in terms of speakers as well.
An audience member referred to MIT Media Lab's Algorithmic Justice League, which studies facial recognition and examines it in the context of justice and judicial processes.
The policy recommendations include making spaces like IGF inclusive and safe for people of other genders by ensuring that data collection, especially gender specific data, is only collected if necessary, and by ensuring inclusive facilities in the IGF and NRI spaces. This is something which can be easily implemented in the IGF ecosystem with some more attention to detail.
Participants: 30 women, 8 men, at least 2 non-binary persons.
Speakers: 4 women, 1 men
Moderator: 1 non-binary
Rapporteur: 1 non-binary
The whole session was on feminist approach to body and data. Gender emerged strongly in the examples presented, as well as a key interaction of the session topic, The body as data in the age of datafication.
The session also pushed to expand the purview of gender beyond the binaries of male and female through explicit examples by both the speakers as well as in interventions by participants. There was also a conversation on the binary gender options at the IGF registration, and on the lack of inclusive facilities at the venue for people of other genders