research talk Anjana Ramkumar

Emotional data bodies: from affective computing to digital ecologies

Emotional data and digital technologies of affective capture are increasingly valuable and available. Attempts to measure the emotional pulse of cities are central to claims made around the future of smart, empathic and sentient cities.  Digital emotion sensing technologies are enjoying a commercial boom and significant investments in research and innovation in this area. Technologies such as facial recognition, virtual reality, ingestibles, empathic AI, and emotional detection are becoming everyday realities. In this presentation I build on interdisciplinary approaches including insights from human geography, new media philosophies, and media anthropologies to provide background on the formations of knowledge and technical practices associated with digital emotion sensing. I explore the ways in which perspectives from computer science and engineering converge with developments in in the emotion sciences, and outline some of the contours of disagreement within and beyond these fields. Mindful of the significant ethical questions which still surround the development and application of these emerging technologies, I offer a set of conceptual tools organised around the notion of emotional governance in order to advance critical analysis of the promises and pitfalls of these new digital ecologies.

To receive the link to the event, please register by latest 29 November 2022 9:00am CET here:

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Jessica Pykett

Jessica Pykett

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham

Jessica Pykett is a social and political geographer with research interests in governance, knowledge practices, policy innovation and political subjectivities.  Her research has focused on affective and emotional techniques of governance, and the influence of neuroscience and behavioural science on public policy and economic theory. Current work is on the intersections of neuroscience and geography, concepts of urban stress and urban wellbeing, and political technologies of emotional regulation. She has organised and chaired several international seminars on the these themes, on vitalist methodologies and embodied technologies. Her research traces the sociodigital futures imagined and deployed in research, applications and governance within these fields.

Moderation & Organizers


Tabea Bork Hüffer

Tabea Bork Hüffer

Universität Innsbruck

Geographical conference

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