Special Issues

IEEE Transactions on Technology & Society (TTS)

SPECIAL ISSUES – CALLS FOR PAPERS

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Special Issue: Imagining Tomorrow’s Infrastructure

Call for Papers

Description

Current infrastructure has served billions of people around the world and has achieved efficiencies and economies of scale [1] [2]. Most of it was built using assumptions of perpetual growth and demographic and socio-economic stability but once in place it has also generated vulnerabilities [3] [4] [5] and a need to protect against the exploitation of those vulnerabilities [6] [7] [8] [9]. The relevance of some foundational assumptions is decreasing, and further changes may be expected [10] [11].  The precise scope of what counts as ‘infrastructure’ varies by jurisdiction and ideology, yielding almost arbitrary distinctions between it and other equally essential services (banking and finance, health services, communications, logistics and food distribution, etc.) that are left to be provided by the marketplace.  There is similar variation in whether public or private actors provide infrastructure services [10] [12].  Paradoxical, we have seen a deterioration of mental health in an era when the infrastructure required for the provision of basic physical needs has seldom been better, and similarly we have seen a pandemic of loneliness in an era when the infrastructural means of communications have never been better [13] [14]. Finally, although the phrase “revolutionary technology” has been overused, technological changes have generated new design opportunities [15] that may yield more robust performance of infrastructural systems.

Noting that many of the original drivers for infrastructure development have changed and worrisome vulnerabilities and interdependencies have emerged, it is timely to assess the future of infrastructure systems [8] [9] [16] [17]. Assessments should consider the diversity of economic conditions, network effects, and broader environmental [18] and cultural changes [19] [20]. Some adaptations to the scope of “infrastructure”, may be needed. Sewage treatment, roads/rails and bridges, power transmission [10], potable water provision [21] and administrative accommodation have been traditionally considered as essential infrastructure, but financial services, healthcare and communications may claim to be equally foundational. Basic needs must not be forgotten but long-term changes to the definition of “basic needs” served by infrastructure warrant consideration [22] [23]. Less centralised and more mobile human populations (whether voluntary migrants or refugees) create specific infrastructure-planning challenges [24] [25] that deserve assessment of issues including unequal access, variations in the timing of demand, and a desire for greater interoperability.

Family members and local social networks once informally satisfied many human needs such as friendship, child-support, medical treatment, and care of the elderly. Now many people look for these services [26] in the marketplace or from infrastructure providers [27]. Changing patterns of mobility (and provision for those living with disability) and opportunities for remote working have disrupted historical approaches in surprising ways. In a society whose demographics and means of economic production are changing fundamentally there are challenges in building infrastructure that offers improved ability to meet real human needs [28]. Efforts to augment physical infrastructures with sensors and autonomous intelligence are underway [29] [30], leaving open questions about their economic, social and ethical implications.

Let’s apply our research to identifying/evaluating the social changes that would be required to support radically changed infrastructure. Let’s imagine which infrastructure investments will retain value if disruptive technologies such as telemedicine, local energy storage, or local food and medicine synthesis mature? Let’s consider whether it is feasible to predict the advent of disruptive infrastructural technologies – and finally let us consider how infrastructure systems can make graceful transitions to future scopes and future configurations.

 

Important dates

  • Submissions open: Now
  • Submissions close: 29 Mar 2025
  • Author latest notifications of acceptance: Jun 2025
  • Subsequent review rounds: Jun-Sep 2025
  • Final receipt of final files 01 Oct 2025
  • Publication of special issue (tentative): 01 Dec 2025

Please note, TTS subscribes to a pre-print model of access. Once your paper is accepted it will appear online freely available with DOI until it is placed in the relevant issue.

 

Topics

Acceptable types of paper may include:

  • Interdisciplinary considerations connecting technical perspectives on future critical infrastructure to socio-cultural and political-economic theories
  • Papers approaching critical infrastructure as a social construct shaped by socio-historical contexts, competing discourses and visions of the future
  • Examinations of theoretical concepts and broader sociocultural ideas for approaching the future critical infrastructures problem
  • Investigations that describe and explain change in infrastructure systems. Reviews of literature on one or more of the proposed themes

Special issue submissions may be focused upon, but not need not be limited to, the following topics:

  • Resilient and robust infrastructure
  • New and changing infrastructure scope
  • (Re)distributed infrastructure
  • Connectedness and meeting real human needs
  • Supporting a next-generation infrastructure
  • Disruptive infrastructural technology
  • Sociotechnical and economic transition options
  • ”future proof” infrastructure approaches

 

Submissions that fall outside the above scope, will be referred to general issues of TTS.

 

How to Submit

For article formats, templates, and submission information, see https://technologyandsociety.org/transactions/tts-author-information/.

Submit your papers through https://ieee.atyponrex.com/dashboard/?journalCode=TTS

 

Review and publication process

Papers will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Papers accepted for full review will be reviewed by anonymous reviewers with a target turnaround of 8weeks for a first review decision. To be considered for the special issue, revisions of papers that are accepted with changes need to be submitted before the listed dates. Should they require further cycles of revision, they will be included in a future regular issue of the Transactions, pending a decision by the Co-Editors-in-Chief.

 

Guest Editors

* Corresponding guest editors

 

Bibliography

[1] Kwoka J E Jr (2005) Electric power distribution: economies of scale, mergers, and restructuring. Applied Economics. Volume 37, 2005 – Issue 20. Pages 2373-2386. https://doi.org/10.1080/00036840500309247

[2] Wenban-Smith H (2006) Urban infrastructure: Density matters, not just size. Research Papers in Environmental & Spatial Analysis. No. 104

[3] Attenberger A (2023) Modeling Approaches for Cyber Attacks on Energy Infrastructure. Conference paper.  EUROCAST 2022: Computer Aided Systems Theory – EUROCAST 2022 pp 199–206. Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 13789).

[4] Ibarra J; Butt U J; Do A; Jahankhani H & Jamal A (2019) Ransomware Impact to SCADA Systems and its Scope to Critical Infrastructure.  Published in: 2019 IEEE 12th International Conference on Global Security, Safety and Sustainability (ICGS3). DOI: 10.1109/ICGS3.2019.8688299. Publisher: IEE. Conference Location: London, UK

[5] Robertson L (2020) The technological ‘exposure’ of populations; characterisation and future reduction. Futures. DOI: 10.1016/j.futures.2020.102584

[6] Bonaci T; Michael K; Rivas P; Robertson L J & Zimmer M (2022) Emerging Technologies, Evolving Threats: Next-Generation Security Challenges. IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society ( Volume: 3, Issue: 3, Page(s): 155 – 162. DOI: 10.1109/TTS.2022.3202323

[7] Cavelty M D & Kristensen K S (eds) (2008). Securing “the Homeland”: Critical Infrastructure, Risk and (In)security. Routledge, NY.

[8] Hallegatte S, Rentschler J & Rozenberg J (2019) Lifelines: The Resilient Infrastructure Opportunity. World Bank Publications, 16/07/2019 – Business & Economics.

[9] Hynes W, Trump B, Love P & Linkov I (2020) Bouncing forward: a resilience approach to dealing with COVID-19 and future systemic shocks. Environment Systems and Decisions volume 40, pages174–184 (2020). <https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10669-020-09776-x>

[10] Kocakusak D, Senick J & Andrews C J. “Implementing the energy transition: lessons from New Jersey’s residential solar industry.” Climate Policy, 2023, doi 10.1080/14693062.2023.2202208.

[11] Slay AM, J. (2023). Pandemics and Illegal Manipulation of Digital Technologies: Examining Cause and Effect in a Time of COVID-19. In: Smith, R.G., Sarre, R., Chang, L.YC., Lau, L.YC. (eds) Cybercrime in the Pandemic Digital Age and Beyond. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007

[12] Rozenberg J & Fay M (2019) Beyond the Gap: How Countries Can Afford the Infrastructure They Need while Protecting the Planet. World Bank Publications, 12/02/2019 – Business & Economics.

[13] O’Sullivan R, Lawlor B, Burns A & Leavey G (2021) Will the pandemic reframe loneliness and social isolation? The Lancet Healthy Longevity. Volume 2, ISSUE 2, e54-e55, February 2021. https://doi.org/10.1016/S2666-7568(20)30066-0

[14] Swader, C.S & Moraru, AV. Social Infrastructure and the Alleviation of Loneliness in Europe. Köln Z Soziol (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11577-023-00883-6

[15] Lebreton L & Andrady A (2019) Future scenarios of global plastic waste generation and disposal. nature humanities and social sciences communications. Palgrave Communications volume 5, Article number: 6 (2019).

[16] Tyler N (2021) Next-generation infrastructure for next-generation people – Smart Infrastructure and Construction. Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers. E-ISSN 2397-8759. Volume 173 Issue 2, June 2020, pp. 24-28. https://doi.org/10.1680/jsmic.20.00012.

[17] Wu J, Zhang Y & Shi Z (2021). Crafting a Sustainable Next Generation Infrastructure: Evaluation of China’s New Infrastructure Construction Policies. Sustainability 2021, 13(11), 6245; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13116245.

[18] Andrews C J. “Toward a research agenda on climate-related migration.” Journal of Industrial Ecology 24: 331– 341, 2020. doi 10.1111/jiec.13005.

[19] Andreucci M B, Russo A & Olszewska-Guizzo A (2019). Designing Urban Green Blue Infrastructure for Mental Health and Elderly Wellbeing. Sustainability. Volume 11  Issue 22  https://doi.org/10.3390/su11226425.

[20] Jáuregui A, Lambert E V, Panter J, Moore C & Salvo D (2021) Scaling up urban infrastructure for physical activity in the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. The Lancet Journal. COMMENT| VOLUME 398, ISSUE 10298, P370-372, JULY 31, 2021. DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(21)01599-3.

[21] Enoch M; Balci P (2020) A Tale of Three Cities: Green Infrastructure Incentives in Urban Areas. NYC’s Next Generation Tools for Private Property Green Infrastructure. Session number 420.  Proceedings of the Water Environment Federation. Conference Paper. Publisher Water Environment Federation.

[22] Guelpa E, Bischi A, Verda V, Chertkov M & Lund H (2019) Towards future infrastructures for sustainable multi-energy systems: A review. Energy. Volume 184, 1 October 2019, Pages 2-21.

[23] Muller S (2013) The Next Generation Of Infrastructure. Pub. in SCENARIO 03: Rethinking Infrastructure.  <https://scenariojournal.com/article/the-next-generation-of-infrastructure/>

[24] Andrews C J. “Formulating and implementing public policy for new energy carriers.” Proceedings of the IEEE, October 2006, 94(10): 1852–63. doi 10.1109/JPROC.2006.883716.

[25] do Prado J C, Qiao W, Qu L & Agüero J R (2019) The Next-Generation Retail Electricity Market in the Context of Distributed Energy Resources: Vision and Integrating Framework. Energies. Volume 12 Issue 3. P491. https://doi.org/10.3390/en12030491.

[26] Castells M (2022). “The Network Society Revisited.” American Behavioral Scientist 67(7); <https://doi.org/10.1177/00027642221092803>.

[27] Brown H (2014) Next Generation Infrastructure: Principles for Post-Industrial Public Works. Pub. Island Press Washington, DC. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5822/978-1-61091-202-0   ISBN 978-1-61091-202-0.

[28] Biel MG & Hamrah O (2021) Editorial: Learning From the Pandemic: “Building Back Better” Through Research on Risk and Resilience With Diverse Populations. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 10 Feb 2021, 60(4):445-447. DOI: 10.1016/j.jaac.2021.02.001 PMID: 33581228.

[29] Bhuiyan E A, Hossain MdZ, Muyeen S M, Fahim S R, Sarker S K & Das S K (2021) Towards next generation virtual power plant: Technology review and frameworks. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews. Volume 150, October 2021, 111358.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rser.2021.111358.

[30] Zhang C, Fan C, Yao W, Hu X & Mostafavi A (2019) Social media for intelligent public information and warning in disasters: An interdisciplinary review. International Journal of Information Management. Volume 49, December 2019, Pages 190-207.

 

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Special Issue: Ethics in the Global Innovation Helix

Call for Papers

Description

The triple helix model of innovation was introduced in the 1990s, developed to theorize and understand interactions between academia, industry, and government. Since then, scholars have expanded it to include additional strands or sectors, including society or the public (quadruple helix) and the natural environment (quintuple helix). The special issue theme, “Ethics in the Global Innovation Helix,” underscores questions about the role and place of ethics and related concerns (e.g., social responsibility, social justice, regulatory compliance, etc.) in interactions between these strands, especially in ongoing processes of technology innovation, diffusion, evolution, and maintenance.

 

Topics:

  • Bridging the social and the ethical in engineering research and practice
  • Developing and negotiating AI guidelines and governance
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion in the innovation helix
  • Identifying social and ethical implications of technological innovations
  • Impact of AI and other innovations on culture
  • Implementing “ethics by design”
  • Innovation and engineering ethics education
  • Technology practitioners and ethical innovation
  • Understanding and mitigating ethical risks of emerging technologies

 

Invitations/Submissions:

This is a closed Call for Papers limited to invited paper and poster presenters at IEEE ETHICS-2023, a series originally launched in 2014, that took place on 18-20 May 2023. ETHICS-2023 is a conference of the IEEE Society on Social Implications of Technology (SSIT) and was co-sponsored and hosted by the National Institute for Engineering Ethics in the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University, West Lafayette. Indiana, USA https://attend.ieee.org/ethics-2023/ .

 

 

Important Dates

  • Full paper submission, post conference: September 2023
  • First round reviews complete: January 2024
  • Subsequent review rounds: February to April 2024
  • Final acceptance / files uploaded: June 2024
  • Publication of Special Issue: September 2024 *

 

* Please note, TTS uses a pre-print model of access. Once your paper is accepted it will appear online freely available with DOI until it is placed in the relevant issue.

 

How to Submit

Submission information, including template details and general information for authors, is available here. Papers should be submitted via the IEEE Author Portal manuscript submission system. Please select the ‘Ethics’ special issue option.

 

Guest Editors

  • Joseph Herkert, STS Program, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC, USA. jherkert@ncsu.edu (corresponding)
  • Brent Jesiek, School of Engineering Education, Purdue University, West Lafayette. Indiana, USA. bjesiek@purdue.edu
  • Justin Hess, School of Engineering Education, Purdue University, West Lafayette. Indiana, USA. jhess@purdue.edu
  • Marc Cheong, Computing and Information Systems, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia. cheong@unimelb.edu.au

 

 

References

Alfano, J. A. Carter, and M. Cheong, “Technological Seduction and Self-Radicalization,” Journal of the American Philosophical Association, vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 298–322, 2018, doi: 10.1017/apa.2018.27.

Barcellos-Paula, I. De la Vega, and A. M. Gil-Lafuente, “The Quintuple Helix of Innovation Model and the SDGs: Latin-American Countries’ Case and Its Forgotten Effects,” Mathematics, vol. 9, no. 4, p. 416, Feb. 2021, doi: 10.3390/math9040416.

G. Carayannis, T. D. Barth, and D. F. Campbell, “The Quintuple Helix innovation model: global warming as a challenge and driver for innovation,” Journal of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, vol. 1, no. 1, p. 2, 2012, doi: 10.1186/2192-5372-1-2.

G. Carayannis, D. F. J. Campbell, and E. Grigoroudis, “Helix Trilogy: the Triple, Quadruple, and Quintuple Innovation Helices from a Theory, Policy, and Practice Set of Perspectives,” Journal of the Knowledge Economy, Jun. 2021, doi: 10.1007/s13132-021-00813-x.

L. Hess and G. Fore, “A Systematic Literature Review of US Engineering Ethics Interventions,” Science and Engineering Ethics, vol. 24, p. 551-583, 2018, doi: 10.1007/s11948-017-9910-6.

Jesiek, Q. Zhu, S. Woo, J. Thompson, and A. Mazzurco, “Global Engineering Competency in Context: Situations and Behaviors,” Online Journal for Global Engineering Education, vol. 8, no. 1, Mar. 2014, Accessed: Jun. 28, 2023. [Online]. Available: https://digitalcommons.uri.edu/ojgee/vol8/iss1/1/.

Kelts, “Rethinking the Firm: Finding the Space for Ethics in Innovation,” in IEEE Technology and Society Magazine, vol. 41, no. 3, pp. 29-37, Sept. 2022, doi: 10.1109/MTS.2022.3197112.

Lindberg, I. Danilda, and B.-M. Torstensson, “Women Resource Centres—A Creative Knowledge Environment of Quadruple Helix,” Journal of the Knowledge Economy, vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 36–52, Jun. 2011, doi: 10.1007/s13132-011-0053-8.

A. Martin, E. Conlon, and B. Bowe, “A Multi-level Review of Engineering Ethics Education: Towards a Socio-technical Orientation of Engineering Education for Ethics,” Science and Engineering Ethics, vol. 27, no. 5, Aug. 2021, doi: 10.1007/s11948-021-00333-6.

Peters, K. Vold, D. Robinson and R. A. Calvo, “Responsible AI—Two Frameworks for Ethical Design Practice,” in IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 34-47, March 2020, doi: 10.1109/TTS.2020.2974991.

Roberts, J. Herkert, and J. Kuzma, “Responsible innovation in biotechnology: Stakeholder attitudes and implications for research policy,” Elem Sci Anth, vol. 8, no. 1, p. 47, Aug. 2020, doi: 10.1525/elementa.446.

C. Stahl and D. Wright, “Ethics and Privacy in AI and Big Data: Implementing Responsible Research and Innovation,” in IEEE Security & Privacy, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 26-33, May/June 2018, doi: 10.1109/MSP.2018.2701164.

D. Urquhart and P. J. Craigon, “The Moral-IT Deck: a tool for ethics by design,” Journal of Responsible Innovation, pp. 1–33, Mar. 2021, doi: 10.1080/23299460.2021.1880112.

Zhou and H. Etzkowitz, “Triple Helix Twins: A Framework for Achieving Innovation and UN Sustainable Development Goals,” Sustainability, vol. 13, no. 12, p. 6535, Jun. 2021, doi: https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126535.

 

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SPECIAL ISSUE CALL FOR PAPERS

Publishing for Social, Technical & Scientific Impact: Transdisciplinary Reflections (Publishing for High Impact)

 

Description

Publishing high quality academic output generally requires commitment from one or more researchers as they embark on a journey of articulating their research and demonstrating its impact, with the intention of successfully progressing through the peer review process. This journey requires, as a foundation, a rigorous research process, supported by an understanding of the publishing landscape and peer review process, in addition to awareness of what constitutes impactful research. One such aspect in this landscape is the desk rejection process and understanding reasons for desk rejection (see Dwivedi et al. 2022 and Billsberry 2014), which may be frustrating for authors, and unpleasant for journal administrators and editors. The same applies for manuscripts that have gone through multiple review cycles, only to have had hopes raised and dashed after a second or even third round of reviews, deem the manuscript unpublishable in a given outlet. Another pertains to acknowledging the multiple and differing views on ‘theory’ (Sandberg & Alvesson 2021). But all of this is an interactive learning process, despite its asynchronous nature. The question is then, what can we learn from this process to improve our chances of successfully publishing high impact manuscripts?

This endeavour is further complicated by the current academic climate that requires researchers to address global challenges through multi-, inter-, and trans- disciplinary collaborations and projects. For instance, the “embeddedness” of information systems (IS) alone, necessitates a degree of engagement with other disciplines, in order to understand phenomena, enhance the respective disciplines and contribute to complex research problem solving activities (Tarafdar & Davison 2018).  The question remains however, where such cross-sectional research should be published, with the added issue pertaining to the existence of very few highly ranked transdisciplinary publication venues. This is significant as interdisciplinary research is now considered the “norm”, particularly within the scientific community (Gates et al. 2019), and much of this research contains mix-method approaches requiring multiple skillsets coming together to satisfy a singular aim. Furthermore, in this environment, there is often a discrepancy in the definition of quality or impactful research from one discipline or domain of study to the next. Most researchers versed in given methodologies would admit that such research is far from being straightforward, and communicating outcomes is a complex undertaking.

Inspired by the “How to Publish in High Quality Journals” panel held at the ISDSI-Global Conference in December 2021 and hosted by Indian Institute of Management Nagpur India, this special issue seeks to explore and present both the elements that define high quality publications and what constitutes high impact research outputs. The special is set against a transdisciplinary backdrop, specifically where there may be a misalignment between what is considered social, technical, and scientific impact between disciplines, and the shared space to convey this in a typical standard article length. This special issue is intended to provide doctoral students, early career, and established academics a definitive resource containing multiple perspectives regarding research impact and the publishing process, drawing on the experience of researchers who are also editors, and other members of the academy.

Topics

Special issue submissions may be focused on, but not limited, to the following topics:

  • Defining and reconciling differing perspectives of impact: social, technical, and scientific impact
  • Establishing meaningful collaborations in pursuit of quality/impactful research
  • Transdisciplinarity and the publishing/research process
  • Navigating and making the most of the peer review process for reviewers and authors alike
  • Elements constituting quality/impactful research
  • Significance of theory: knowledge of diverse theories, theory selection and application, theory advancement/extension
  • Importance of developing a single story to convey research outcomes, inclusive of a threaded and innovative narrative
  • Novelty, original contributions, and satisfying a research gap
  • Articulating value propositions for high impact/quality research
  • Presenting aims and goals commensurately to results and findings, and not over or under-stating the overall outcomes
  • Using multiple methods appropriately, and not being reductionistic when two or more approaches are brought together conceptually
  • Seeking and providing mentorship towards quality/impactful research outcomes
  • The process of collaboration and the use of the Contributor Roles Taxonomy (CRediT) as best practice

Invitations/Submissions

Invitations to submit brief or original papers that will undergo peer review will be distributed using a rolling basis. The call is open to submissions from experienced journal reviewers, editors, and editorial board members. Prior to a full paper submission, please email roba@uow.edu.au, cc’ing katina.michael@asu.edu with a short proposal detailing the topic area your proposed contribution will cover, to allow for preliminary feedback and the minimisation of overlap between contributions.

Important Dates

  • Submissions open: January 2022
  • Submissions close (panel invitations): 22 March 2022
  • Submissions close (general invitations): 30 September 2022 *(Extended)
  • Cascading author notifications (review rounds): 1 May 2022 – 1 February 2023 *(Extended)
  • Publication of special issue (tentative): June 2023 *

Please note, TTS subscribes to a pre-print model of access. Once your paper is accepted it will appear online freely available with DOI until it is placed in the relevant issue.

How to Submit

Papers should be submitted via the IEEE Author Portal manuscript submission system. General information for authors is available here.

Guest Editors

Roba Abbas (corresponding, roba@uow.edu.au) *, University of Wollongong

Kieran Conboy, NUI Galway
Rameshwar Dubey, Liverpool John Moores University
Yogesh Dwivedi, Swansea University & SIBM Pune
Samuel Fosso-Wamba, Toulouse Business School
Marijn Janssen, TU Delft
Katina Michael *, Arizona State University
Thanos Papadopoulos, Kent Business School
Cleopatra Veloutsou, University of Glasgow

* Peer review handling editors

References

Billsberry, J. (2014). Desk-rejects: 10 top tips to avoid the cull, Journal of Management Education, 38(1): 3-9.

Dwivedi, Y.K., Hughes, L., Cheung, C.M., Conboy, K., Duan, Y., Dubey, R., Janssen, M., Jones, P., Sigala, M. and Viglia, G., 2022. How to develop a quality research article and avoid a journal desk rejection, International Journal of Information Management 62(2022).

Gates A.J., Ke Q., Varol O. and Barabási A.L. (2019). Nature’s reach: narrow work has broad impact. Nature, 575, 32–34.

Sandberg, J. and Alvesson, M. (2021). Meanings of theory: Clarifying theory through typification. Journal of Management Studies58(2), 487-516.

Tarafdar, M. and Davison, R. M. (2018). Research in information systems: Intra-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary approaches. Journal of the Association for Information Systems19(6), 2, 523-551.

 

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Upcoming Special Issue on After Covid-19: Crises, Ethics, and Socio-Technical Change

The IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society has launched a call for papers for an upcoming special issue with a closing date of 01 December 2021.

Description

As the COVID-19 pandemic shows, crises can catalyze socio-technical changes at a speed and scale otherwise thought impossible. Crises expose the fragility and resilience of our sociotechnical systems – from healthcare to financial markets, internet connectivity, and local communities. Their urgent peril can rush through radical measures, such as states globally rolling out digital contact tracing applications. Crises can accelerate technological trends like the virtualization of work, commerce, education, and communing, and dramatically reshape markets, threatening economic incumbents and creating new opportunities for innovation and profiteering alike. Thus, we currently see physical retailers and entertainment venues defaulting, while online retail and streaming companies thrive and stores, artists, and manufacturers desperately trial new digitally enabled services and new forms of financing, production, and delivery. Technology companies and scientists are rapidly developing new technologies to respond to the pandemic, from 3D-printing medical devices to data and AI-driven symptom tracking and immunity certification, while struggling to counter tides of unvetted, potentially harmful medical advice, opinion, and cures.

In parallel, ongoing crises like COVID-19 often dramatically reshape political and public demands on science. Standard forms of scientific inquiry, responsible innovation, and technology ethics emphasize slowness, deliberation, critique, long-term anticipation and preparedness, and systematic accumulation and vetting of evidence. In contrast, in periods of crisis, policy-makers and media publics require concrete, real-time decision guidance and interventions from researchers that are at odds with the standard practices of science as well as research and technology ethics. This has led some researchers to suggest their own discipline may not be ‘crisis-ready’.

Finally, many of the dramatic and sudden adaptations to a crisis are bound to stay with us. “After 9/11” has become a marker for a new epoch of pervasive socio-technical regimes of surveillance that were considered exceptional and temporary when introduced. Similarly, many of today’s ad-hoc responses will become historical path dependencies for a new era “after COVID-19”.

Catalyzing rapid change; reshaping demands on science, technology, and their regulation; locking in future socio-technical regimes: All these factors make it crucial for researchers and technologists to consider the societal impacts of new technologies and socio-technical changes that respond to COVID-19. But they also invite us to better understand how crises impact socio-technical change, and how we can develop forms of science and technology ethics and regulation that fit the needs and demands of crises.

To this end, this special issue aims to bring together researchers from different disciplines exploring the intersections of technology, ethics, and COVID-19 as an exemplary crisis.

Important dates

  • Submissions open: Now
  • Submissions close: extended! to: 1 February 2022
  • Publication of final issue: 1 May 2022

Topics

Submissions are especially invited on but not limited to the following topics intersecting with COVID-19 and crises:

  • Responsible innovation and science and technology ethics
  • Science and technology policy, regulation, and governance
  • Public understanding of and engagement with science and technology
  • Innovation processes
  • Health surveillance, privacy, and data protection
  • Algorithmic and technological biases and inequalities
  • Impacts of technologies during social isolation
  • Impacts of technologies on healthcare and key support workers
  • 3D printing and medical devices
  • Future Mobility
  • Data/AI-driven health and social control technologies
  • Virtual/remote work, education, and leisure

Submissions that will be considered out of scope include:

  • Work that does not touch ethical or societal impacts of science and technology
  • Clinical research where a medical journal would be more appropriate

How to Submit

For article formats, templates, and submission information, see https://technologyandsociety.org/transactions/.

Submit your papers through https://ieee.atyponrex.com/journal/TTS

Review and publication process

Papers will be reviewed and published online first upon acceptance on a rolling basis.

Papers accepted for full review will be reviewed by two anonymous reviewers and a meta-reviewer, with a target turnaround of three weeks for a review decision.

To be considered for the special issue, revisions of papers that are revise-and-resubmit or accepted with minor/major changes need to be submitted before 1st March 2022. Should they require a further cycle of revision, they will be included in a future regular issue of the Transactions.

Confirmed Guest Editors

Rafael A. Calvo, Dyson School of Design Engineering, Imperial College London

Sebastian Deterding, Digital Creativity Labs, University of York

Catherine Flick, Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility, De Montfort University

Christoph Luetge, Institute for Ethics in AI, Technical University of Munich (TUM)

Alison Powell, Department of Media and Communications, London School of Economics and Political Science

Karina Vold, Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, University of Toronto & University of Cambridge

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Upcoming Special Issue on Socio-Technical Ecosystem Considerations: Threats and Opportunities for AI in Cybersecurity

The IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society has launched a call for papers for an upcoming special issue with a closing date of 01 February 2022.

Description

 

New technology development and adoption of those new technologies continues to accelerate. We live today in a saturated, information environment with unprecedented dependence on digital technologies.

 

An element of the expansion of digital technologies is a shift in Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology from research laboratories into the hands of anyone with a smartphone [[1]]. AI powered search, personalization and automation are being deployed across sectors, from education to healthcare, to policing, to finance. Wide AI diffusion is then reshaping the way organizations, communities and individuals’ function. [[2]].

 

The potentially radical consequences of AI have pushed nation states across the globe to publish strategies on how they seek to shape, drive and leverage the disruptive capabilities offered by AI technologies to bolster their prosperity and security [[3]].

In the context of new partnerships, and within existing alliances, these efforts can be seen as an opportunity for positive alignment so that governance and new capabilities create value for citizens’ well-being, privacy [[4]] and safety [[5]]. Those same national efforts to lead, nurture and sustain AI to transform citizens’ lives can also be viewed as a competition, or even as an international AI arm race undermining international stability [[6]].

Within the intelligence alliance of Five Eyes countries, policy initiatives for the governance of AI in the security and defense domains focus on potential security breaches, economic consequences, and political threats [[7]]. The relative disregard for social and environmental factors is problematic. This lack of attention may shape how AI could be used in cybersecurity for harm, beyond the organizational level, and systems of governance that may or may not respect the rule of law [[8]]. Furthermore, AI systems themselves introduce new targets for malicious actors.

There has been a resurgence within academia and associated specialist scientific institutes to investigate socio-technical factors (i.e., the interaction of people, tasks, structure, and technology) shaping cybersecurity. But there has still been limited focus on the complex external environment and dynamic socio-cyber-physical ecosystem [[9]].

The vast majority of security research relates to the traditional Confidentiality-Integrity-Availability (CIA) triad. While this strategy has continued to strengthen organizational and infrastructural defenses, we must consider the new emergent threats. These include: homogeneity in products at their core operating system, large storage area network providers and critical telecommunication exchanges and international banking interchanges, and the supply of electricity and water and the respective interdependencies therein [[10]]. Of particular importance are autonomous systems leveraging advanced machine learning systems that incorporate blackbox models (e.g., billion parameter neural networks), and highly complex technologies that may be microscopic and even embeddable and undetectable [[11]].

The socio-technical approach [[12]] is promising in this context, as it allows us to move beyond a particular system of interest and associated inputs, outputs and attack vectors to an open systems environment, at the heart of which is stakeholder centricity [[13]].

This special issue invites research focused on a deeper examination of value chain stakeholders [[14]], their roles and responsibilities and their corresponding dynamic interactions and interdependencies in the present turbulent environment [[15]]. Contributions to the special issue will focus a range of questions. For example, how do different federal and state laws, regulations, policies, guidelines and economic infrastructure shape the AI and cybersecurity landscape in an international context? How is AI and cybersecurity being applied as a potential global offset? How can cybersecurity specialists respond to these threats once they have been explicitly identified?

To this end, this special issue aims to bring together researchers from different disciplines exploring the intersections of socio-technical imaginaries, ethics, and the role of AI in cybersecurity as an exemplary crisis for inquiry and debate.

Important dates

  • Submissions open: Now
  • Submissions close: 1 February 2022
  • Publication of final issue: 1 September 2022
  • Please note, TTS subscribes to Pre-Print model of access. Once your paper is accepted it will appear online freely available with DOI until it is placed in the special issue in September 2022.

 

Topics

Submissions are especially invited on, but not limited to, the following topics intersecting with AI and/in Cybersecurity:

  • Responsible innovation and science and technology ethics [[16], [17]]
  • Science and technology policy, regulation, and governance [[18]]
  • Public understanding of and engagement with AI and cybersecurity [[19]]
  • Innovation processes [[20], [21]]
  • Algorithmic and technological biases and inequalities [[22]]
  • Impacts of AI and cybersecurity unleashed by nation states
  • Impacts of AI and cybersecurity on nascent wearable and implantable technologies [[23], [24], [25], [26]]
  • Socio-technical imaginaries, power, discrimination, contradiction [[27], [28], [29]]
  • Anticipatory/futures-literate approaches to the future of AI and cyber security [[30]]
  • The security of AI algorithms in a socio-technical context [[31]]
  • The role of scenarios, vignettes, stories and qualitative approaches to AI and cybersecurity understanding [[32], [33]]
  • Data/AI-driven cybersecurity for attack and defense [[34]]
  • Intelligence challenges related to AI and cybersecurity [[35]]
  • Holistic and exploratory approaches to AI- big picture national perspectives
  • Public interest technologies in AI and cybersecurity [[36]]
  • The role of regulation and or (soft)/laws on the future practices of AI, considering both national (e.g. governance of AI) and international (AI for defense) perspectives [[37], [38]]
  • The role of education and training in raising societal awareness of cybersecurity threats [[39], [40]]
  • Opportunities and challenges for socio-technical systems enhancement [[41]]

Submissions that will be considered out of scope include:

  • Work that does not address ethical or societal or environmental impacts of AI and/in cybersecurity
  • Formal methods research where a thematically targeted engineering journal would be more appropriate (e.g. in the field of signal processing or artificial intelligence or security)

 

 

How to Submit

For article formats, templates, and submission information, see

Submit your papers through https://ieee.atyponrex.com/dashboard/?journalCode=TTS  .

Review and publication process

Papers will be reviewed and published online first upon acceptance on a rolling basis.

Papers accepted for full review will be reviewed by two anonymous reviewers and a meta-reviewer, with a target turnaround of three weeks for a review decision.

To be considered for the special issue, revisions of papers that are revise-and-resubmit or accepted with minor/major changes need to be submitted before 1st June 2022. Should they require a further cycle of revision, they will be included in a future regular issue of the Transactions.

 

Guest Editors

Mariarosaria Taddeo, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, UK and Turing Fellow, Alan Turing Institute, UK

Paul Jones, National Cyber Security Center, UK

Roba Abbas, School of Business, University of Wollongong, Australia

Kathleen Vogel, School for the Future of Innovation in Society, Arizona State University, USA

 

Bibliography

[1] Gil, Y. and Selman, B. August 6, 2019, A 20-Year Community Roadmap for Artificial Intelligence Research in the US. Computing Community Consortium (CCC) and Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI). https://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1908/1908.02624.pdf

[2] UK Government, 21 May 2019, “AI Sectoral Deal”, Gov.UK, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/artificial-intelligence-sector-deal/ai-sector-deal

[3] Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence of the National Science and Technology Council, June 2019, “The National Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan: 2019 Update (nitrd.gov)”, Executive Office of the President, https://www.nitrd.gov/pubs/National-AI-RD-Strategy-2019.pdf

[4] Michael, K., Kobran, S., Abbas, R. and Hamdoun, S., 2019, “Privacy, Data Rights and Cybersecurity: Technology for Good in the Achievement of Sustainable Development Goals,” 2019 IEEE International Symposium on Technology and Society (ISTAS), 1-13.

[5] Michael, K. and Abbas, R., 13 March 2020, “Responsible AI: Ensuring Reliable, Safe & Trustworthy Systems”, The Thirteenth Workshop on the Social Implications of National Security (SINS20), Human Factors Series, Arizona State University, Washington DC, USA, https://www.katinamichael.com/sins20

[6] Michael, K., Roba Abbas, Jeremy Pitt, 24 May 2021, “Maintaining Control over AI”, Issues in Science and Technology: Forum, XXXVII(3), Spring 2021, https://issues.org/debating-human-control-over-artificial-intelligence-forum-shneiderman/

[7] Helen L. 24 July 2020, A sociotechnical approach to cyber security: How a multi-disciplinary approach can help us deliver security that works in the real world, National Cyber Security Centre, https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/blog-post/a-sociotechnical-approach-to-cyber-security

[8] Davis, Matthew C. and Rose Challenger, Dharshana N.W. Jayewardene, Chris W. Clegg, “Advancing socio-technical systems thinking: A call for bravery”, Applied Ergonomics, Vol. 45, Iss. 2, Part A, 2014, pp. 171-180, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apergo.2013.02.009

[9] Abbas, Roba and Katina Michael, 10 August 2020, “The Design and Implementation of the COVIDSafe App in Australia: A Socio-Technical Overview”, International COVID-19 Congress, IEEE Bangladesh Section, Dhaka, Bangladesh, https://www.katinamichael.com/seminars/2020/8/10/the-design-and-implementation-of-the-covidsafe-app-in-australia

[10] Stephan, K.D., K. Michael, M. G. Michael, L. Jacob and E. P. Anesta, 2012, “Social Implications of Technology: The Past, the Present, and the Future,” in Proceedings of the IEEE, 100, (no. Special Centennial Issue): 1752-1781, 13 May 2012, doi: 10.1109/JPROC.2012.2189919.

[11] CCC, 27 October 2020, “Assured Autonomy: Path Toward Living With Autonomous Systems We Can Trust”, Community, Computing, Consortium: Catalyst, Phoenix, Arizona, https://cra.org/ccc/wp-content/uploads/sites/2/2020/10/Assured-Autonomy-Workshop-Report-Final.pdf

[12] Bostrom, Robert P., and J. Stephen Heinen. 1977, “MIS Problems and Failures: A Socio-Technical Perspective, Part II: The Application of Socio-Technical Theory,” MIS Quarterly, 1(4): 11–28.

[13] Pitt, J. and J. Ober, “Democracy by Design: Basic Democracy and the Self-Organization of Collective Governance,” 2018 IEEE 12th International Conference on Self-Adaptive and Self-Organizing Systems (SASO), 20-29, doi: 10.1109/SASO.2018.00013.

[14] Carayon P. Human factors of complex sociotechnical systems. Appl Ergon. 2006 Jul;3 7(4):525-35. doi: 10.1016/j.apergo.2006.04.011

[15] Carayannis, E.G., Rakhmatullin, R., 2014, “The Quadruple/Quintuple Innovation Helixes and Smart Specialization Strategies for Sustainable and Inclusive Growth in Europe and Beyond”, J Knowl Econ, 5: 212–239.

[16] European Parliament, March 2020, “The ethics of artificial intelligence: Issues and initiatives”, European Parliament, Panel for the Future of Science and Technology, EPRS | European Parliamentary Research Service, Scientific Foresight Unit (STOA), PE 634.452, https://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/STUD/2020/634452/EPRS_STU(2020)634452_EN.pdf

[17] Vogel, K., Balmer, B., Weiss, S., Kroener, I., Matsumoto, M. and Brian, R., 2016. The Handbook of Science and Technology Studies, pp.973-1002.

[18] Pitt, J., J. Dryzek and J. Ober, “Algorithmic Reflexive Governance for Socio-Techno-Ecological Systems,” in IEEE Technology and Society Magazine, 39(2): 52-59, June 2020, doi: 10.1109/MTS.2020.2991500.

[19] Michael, Katina and Roba Abbas, 10 August 2020, “Lessons from COVIDSafe: Toward Public Interest Technologies of the Future”, International COVID-19 Congress, IEEE Bangladesh Section, Dhaka, Bangladesh, https://www.katinamichael.com/seminars/2020/8/10/lessons-from-covidsafe-toward-public-interest-technologies-of-the-future

[20] Ellul, Jacques. 1962, “The technological order.” Technology and Culture, 3(4): 394-421.

[21] Geels, F.W., 2002. Technological transitions as evolutionary reconfiguration processes: a multi-level perspective and a case-study. Research policy, 31(8-9), pp.1257-1274.

[22] Mittelstadt, B.D., Allo, P., Taddeo, M., Wachter, S. and Floridi, L., 2016. The ethics of algorithms: Mapping the debate. Big Data & Society 3, 2: 205395171667967.

[23] Perusco, L. and K. Michael, 2007, “Control, trust, privacy, and security: evaluating location-based services,” in IEEE Technology and Society Magazine, 26(1): 4-16, Spring 2007, doi: 10.1109/MTAS.2007.335564.

[24] Gokye, Deniz and Katina Michael, Digital Wearability Scenarios: Trialability on the run, IEEE Consumer Electronics Magazine, Year: 2015, Volume: 4, Issue: 2, pp. 82-91, DOI: 10.1109/MCE.2015.2393005

[25] Johnson, B.D., 2010, November. Science Fiction for Scientists!! An Introduction to SF Prototypes and Brain Machines. In Intelligent Environments (Workshops) (pp. 195-203).

[26] Michael, Katina, “DARPA’s ADAPTER Program: Applying the ELSI Approach to a Semi-Autonomous Complex Socio-Technical System”, The Third 21st Century Wiener Conference, Anna University, Chennai, India, 23-25 July 2021, pp. 1-10.

[27] Jasanoff, S. and Kim, S.H., 2013. Sociotechnical imaginaries and national energy policies. Science as culture, 22(2), pp.189-196.

[28] Jasanoff, S. and Kim, S.H., 2009. Containing the atom: Sociotechnical imaginaries and nuclear power in the United States and South Korea. Minerva, 47(2), p.119

[29] Sadowski, J. and Bendor, R., 2019. Selling smartness: Corporate narratives and the smart city as a sociotechnical imaginary. Science, Technology, & Human Values, 44(3), pp.540-563.

[30] Johnson, B.D., 2011. Science fiction prototyping: Designing the future with science fiction. Synthesis Lectures on Computer Science, 3(1), pp.1-190.

[31] Cath, C., Wachter, S., Mittelstadt, B., Taddeo, M. and Floridi, L., 2018. Artificial intelligence and the ‘good society’: the US, EU, and UK approach. Science and engineering ethics, 24(2), pp.505-528.

[32] Abbas, R. 2021, “Socio-Technical Theory: The Role of Scenarios in Informing Design Choices. Threats and Opportunities for AI in Cybersecurity” in Kathleen Vogel and Katina Michael, Workshop 2: Examining the Socio-Technical Ecosystem (STeS) Considerations, The Alan Turing Institute, 26 February 2021.

[33] Lively, Genevieve, Narratology, Oxford University Press, 2019.

[34] Neil Dhir, Henrique Hoeltgebaum, Niall Adams, Mark Briers, Anthony Burke, Paul Jones, “Prospective Artificial Intelligence Approaches for Active Cyber Defense”, April 20, 2021, https://arxiv.org/abs/2104.09981

[35] Taddeo, M., 2012. Information warfare: A philosophical perspective. Philosophy & Technology, 25(1), pp.105-120.

[36] Abbas, R., J. Pitt and K. Michael, “Socio-Technical Design for Public Interest Technology,” in IEEE Transactions on Technology and Society, vol. 2, no. 2, pp. 55-61, June 2021, doi: 10.1109/TTS.2021.3086260. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/9459499/

[37] Marchant, G.E., 2011. The growing gap between emerging technologies and the law. In The growing gap between emerging technologies and legal-ethical oversight (pp. 19-33). Springer, Dordrecht.

[38] Marchant, G.E., Abbot, K.W. and Allenby, B. eds., 2013. Innovative governance models for emerging technologies. Edward Elgar Publishing.

[39] Kohno, T. and Johnson, B.D., 2011, March. Science fiction prototyping and security education: cultivating contextual and societal thinking in computer security education and beyond. In Proceedings of the 42nd ACM technical symposium on Computer science education (pp. 9-14).

[40] Willis, S., Byrd, G. and Johnson, B.D., 2017. Challenge-based learning. Computer, 50(7), pp.13-16.

[41] Vogel, K.M., 2013. The need for greater multidisciplinary, sociotechnical analysis: The bioweapons case. Studies in Intelligence, 57(3), pp.1-10.

 

Past Special Issues 2020-2023

ID Special Issue Title Vol./Iss. Guest Editors
11 Publishing for Impact: Interdisciplinary Reflections September 2024 (vol. 4, no. 3) R. Abbas, K. Michael, K. Conboy, M. Janssen, Y.K. Dwivedi, C. Veloutsou, T. Papadopoulos, R. Dubey
10 Socio-Technical Ecosystem Considerations: An Emergent Research Agenda for AI in Cybersecurity June 2024 (vol. 4, no. 2) M. Taddeo, P. Jones, R. Abbas, K. Vogel and K. Michael
9 Designing AI Using a Human-Centered Approach: Explainability and Accuracy Toward Trustworthiness March 2024 (vol. 4, no. 1) J.R. Schoenherr, R. Abbas, K. Michael, P. Rivas, and T. D. Anderson
8 After COVID-19: Crises, Ethics, and Socio-Technical Change December 2023 (vol. 3, no. 4) R.A. Calvo, S. Deterding, C. Flick, C. Lütge, A. Powell and K.V. Vold
7 Emerging Technologies, Evolving Threats: Next-Generation Security Challenges September 2023 (vol. 3, no. 3) T. Bonaci, K. Michael, P. Rivas, L.J. Robertson and M. Zimmer
6 Machine Learning, Convergence Digitalization, and the Concentration of Power: Enslavement by Design Using Techno-Biological Behaviors June 2023 (vol. 3, no. 2) R. Abbas, K. Michael, M.G. Michael, C. Perakslis, J. Pitt
5 Biometrics and AI Bias March 2023 (vol. 3, no. 1) K. Michael, R. Abbas, P. Jayashree, R.J. Bandara and A. Aloudat
4 Effective and Trustworthy Implementation of AI Soft Law Governance December 2022 (vol. 2, no. 4) C.I. Gutierrez, G.E. Marchant and K. Michael
3 Anticipating Techno-Economic Fallout: Purpose-Driven Socio-Technical Innovation June 2022 (vol. 2, no. 3) R. Abbas, K. Michael, J. Sargent and E. Scornavacca
2 Socio-Technical Design for Public Interest Technology June 2022 (vol. 2, no. 2) R. Abbas, J. Pitt and K. Michael
1 Smart Infrastructure and Technology Systems Ethics March 2021 (vol. 2, no. 1) K. Michael, R. Abbas, R.A. Calvo, G. Roussos, E. Scornavacca and S.F. Wamba