At RegNet, I lead the Justice and Technoscience Lab (JusTech). JusTech brings together scholars from across Australia and the world to study regulatory strategies that advance more just and equitable approaches to the governance of science and technology. Working with colleagues and doctoral students, most of my ongoing research revolves around three projects:
Biometric Technologies, Surveillance, and Social Assistance
The pervasiveness of biometric data collection and authentication practices has sparked concerns around data security, individual privacy, and potential abuse by authorities. Despite these concerns, biometric technologies, as well as predictive algorithms and risk assessment models, are increasingly used as regulatory tools in the context of social assistance, often in the name of cost savings and fraud prevention. As emergent research suggests these technologies have negative consequences for social assistance recipients, we ask: how are these technologies informing experiences of regulation? What are their effects and implications for governance? Our case studies, supported by the ANU Futures Scheme, examine the UNHCR’s Biometric Identity Management System (BIMS) as well as humanitarian aid, migration management, and social welfare practices in Australia, India, Lebanon and the United Kingdom.
Sociotechnical Navigation and Problem Solving during the COVID-19 Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has created disruptions around the world. Individuals must acquire information, resources, and services by navigating a number of issues, such as public health preventive measures, unexpected financial burdens, working and learning from home, and healthcare services. Amidst changing conditions, sociotechnical infrastructure has become central to accomplishing many mundane and important tasks. How have individuals and communities navigated these systems to acquire needed resources and accomplish everyday life tasks? And, how do these practices vary in relation to locale and personal circumstances? Part of an international team of researchers, we are working to capture how individuals approach and navigate sociotechnical systems in everyday life during times of major disruption and crisis in Australia, Brazil, Denmark, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Traumatic Brain Injury and Regulatory Science
Funded by the Australian Research Council, this project explores how different forms of knowledge have contributed to the rise of traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a health concern. The first component looks at how shifting scientific and public health discourses in Australasia and North America frame TBI as a condition alongside emergent strategies for preventing and managing TBI. The second phase examines different approaches to regulating TBI among sport participants, military personnel, and survivors of intimate partner violence in Australia, Canada, and the United States, including U.S. Pacific Island territories. Overall, the study aims to illuminate how science and regulation interact across contexts, as well as how they reflect shifting beliefs about brain health, the mind and body, and (injured) human agency.
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