Plenarveranstaltung I / Plenary session I: Power and security in times of precarity

"De-politicizing security through technology and the question of power in the 21 century"

Sprecherin / Speaker:

Ursula Rao (Universität Leipzig)

The lecture examines the process of de-and re-politicization of security regimes in an era of digital governance to generate a deeper understanding of the organising principles that frame political orientations and produce the terrain of plausible political action.Today, digital technologies have become the new trusted partners in the fight againstdisorder, misery,  exclusion  and  suffering.  The  introduction  of  mechanized  forms  of  decision-making  is coterminous with structural change that alters the character of the state. For example, policing takes  the  form  of  technical  surveillance exercised at  a multiplying  number  of  de-central  portals that regulate movement in spaces of restricted sociality. In the field of social security, the state moves  from  re-distributing  resources  to  efficiently  coordinating  the  activity  of  countless  public and  private  providers.  Through  these  operations,  the  state  is  reimagined  as  a  platform  to  give citizens frictionless access to the services they need, desire or deserve.  Concerns over surveillance aside, such visions are an extreme instance of a trend within neoliberal statecraft to de-politicize the  social  and  shrink  the space  for  political  action. Is  this  the  end of  negotiations?  I  argue  for a nuanced analysis of digital governance in order to understand the effects of de-politicization and the new forms of political actions that grow in its shadow.

Datum: Sonntag, 29. September 2019