Skip to main content

DOS Research Centre Distinguished Speaker Series

The Correlation Machine: Digital governance and governing the digital?

  • Date 03 Jun 2020
  • Time 4.00pm - 6.00pm
  • Category

In the Second of DOS Distinguished Speaker Series, Prof Lucas Introna, Lancaster University will be discussing his ongoing stream of research and conceptual work exploring digital governance. Registration for this event is free and will open via Eventbrite in the new year.

Location:  Picture Gallery, Founder’s Building, RHUL Egham Campus


In this presentation I want to explore digital governance as a new form of governance that aims to govern effects based on correlations.  I will argue that this form of governance is a dramatically different form of governance that effectively hides the political and ethical and acts to displace or defer problems deemed unsolvable in some form.  I will illustrate this mode of governance by reviewing my work on governing academic writing through plagiarism detection systems and consider the way machine learning is being used to govern a variety of problems such as recruitment and policing. In each case I will attempt to show what digital governance does, ethically and politically, and why I believe it is necessary for society to be critical of these practices. I will conclude with some questions about how we might respond to these digital governing practices, individually and collectively.   


Lucas is professor of organisation, technology, and ethics at Lancaster University. His research interest is the entanglement of the social and the technical, especially with regard to the ethics and politics implicated in such entanglements. He is co-editor of Ethics and Information Technology. He has published on a variety of topics such as sociomateriality (Organisation Studies), algorithms (Theory, Culture & Society; Science, Technology & Human Values), governmentality (Organisation Studies), ethics (Theory, Culture & Society), philosophy of technology (Philosophy in the Contemporary World), information and power (Management, Information & Power, Palgrave 1997), privacy (Journal of Business Ethics) and surveillance (Surveillance & Society). He teaches courses in ethics, reflective practice, and organisational change management.  

Explore Royal Holloway

Get help paying for your studies at Royal Holloway through a range of scholarships and bursaries.

There are lots of exciting ways to get involved at Royal Holloway. Discover new interests and enjoy existing ones

Heading to university is exciting. Finding the right place to live will get you off to a good start

Whether you need support with your health or practical advice on budgeting or finding part-time work, we can help

Discover more about our 21 departments and schools

Find out why Royal Holloway is in the top 25% of UK universities for research rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’

Royal Holloway is a research intensive university and our academics collaborate across disciplines to achieve excellence.

Discover world-class research at Royal Holloway

Discover more about who we are today, and our vision for the future

Royal Holloway began as two pioneering colleges for the education of women in the 19th century, and their spirit lives on today

We’ve played a role in thousands of careers, some of them particularly remarkable

Find about our decision-making processes and the people who lead and manage Royal Holloway today