RESEARCH AGENDAS AND THEMES


I research how artificial intelligence (AI) and data-driven futures intersect with environmental governance and social inequality. More specifically, I study how AI and data science methods and tools become key instruments for political control and regulation. My research is informed by ethnographic research and participatory design with experts, hobbyists, and activists in Southeast Asia for more than five years. I work at the intersections of human-computer interaction (HCI), postcolonial and feminist science and technology studies (STS), critical data studies, and environmental studies. With this interdisciplinary breadth, my work studies the complex relations between the predictive functions of computing systems and the social and physical realities they attempt to capture. 

Below are my primary research agendas and themes. If you are unable to access an article or proceeding, please email me at cindylky@umich.edu.



CODING CLIMATE INEQUALITY


My dissertation research, entitled, Coding Climate Inequality: An Ethnography of Data Control, Efficiency, and Environmental Justice in Postcolonial Indonesia, explores how recent computational practices in environmental knowledge production transform scientific authority and postcolonial state legitimacy in capital city Jakarta, Indonesia. 

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DIGITAL PRECARITY AND FUTURE OF WORK


I have explored how digital technology amplifies precarity and shapes the future of work. The outcomes from this work focus on themes ranging from racial capitalism and surveillance, environmental toxicity, ableism, and the broken welfare state through a multi-sited and historical lens.

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GRASSROOTS TECHNOLOGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE


From 2014 to 2017, I worked closely with several collectives committed to open design, citizen science, and DIY making as methods to democratize citizen participation in state procedures and environmental sustainability in Indonesia. 

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