Joint ANSO / IHP Tuesday Seminars
Florian Janton

The Constitution of Algorithms: What can 'lab studies' say about algorithmic life?

Florian Jaton, University of Lausanne
, -

Room S5, Maison de la paix, Geneva Graduate Institute

The Joint ANSO / IHP Tuesday Seminars series is co-organized by the Anthropology and Sociology and International History and Politics Departments at the Institute to discuss global questions from historically and ethnographically-informed perspectives.

Add to Calendar
Event connection


In "The Constitution of Algorithms" (2021, MIT Press), I documented the mundane activities contributing to the construction of computerized methods of calculation – often called “algorithms” – in an academic laboratory that specialized in digital image processing. In this talk, I will consider some of the difficulties, limits, but also strengths of this specific analytical lens for the study of algorithmic processes.


About the Speaker

Florian Jaton is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the STS Lab, a research unit of the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. Florian studied Philosophy, Mathematics, Literature, and Political Sciences before receiving his PhD in Social Sciences at the University of Lausanne. He also worked at the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Science at the University of California Irvine and at the Centre de Sociologie de l'Innovation at the École des Mines de Paris. His research interests are the sociology of algorithms, the philosophy of mathematics, and the history of computing. He is the author of The Constitution of Algorithms: Ground-Truthing, Programming, Formulating (MIT Press, 2021).


The Joint ANSO / IHP Tuesday Seminars is a regular series of discussions co-organized by the International History and Politics and Anthropology and Sociology Departments at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies to discuss a variety of global questions from a multiplicity of historically and ethnographically-informed perspectives.

The Seminars take place every Tuesday from 16:15 to 18:00 in Seminar Room 5 (S5) at the Graduate Institute (Maison de la paix), and are followed by an apero open to the attending public. Connect to this week's seminar online using the event password tqMQEGTp764.