The Digitisation of Higher Education: New Information Flows, Power Asymmetries and Implications for Surveillance and Privacy

Joint CRISP-Digital Escalate Workshop
Wednesday, October 6, 2021 -
00:00 - 23:45


Participants at this Workshop will explore and better comprehend how evolving information flows are impacting on the higher education experience, from a variety of perspectives, whether it be as a student, educator, researcher, administrator, manager, librarian, technologist or policy-advisor. Of particular interest are the unforeseen implications and consequences of digitisation, especially in relation to enhanced opportunities for surveillance, changes in fundamental pedagogic relationships, and challenges associated with ensuring privacy and compliance with data protection principles. Participants will consider the extent to which the digitisation of higher education is aligned to the commercialisation of the sector, and consequently the degree to which information flows are reliant on, and shared with, commercial third-parties, including the long-term implications of such relationships. The overriding aspiration of the workshop is to provide participants with a greater understanding and awareness of the significance of information flows and their influence on relations within the higher education environment, which will allow for a fuller assessment of how digital technologies can and should be used. This is important to help ensure that the informational consequences and implications of the digitisation of higher education can better meet the needs of the academy and its stakeholders.


Copies of slides can be found here.

  • Some Unintended Consequences of Greater E-Learning: The Digital Escalate Project, Professor Ron McQuaid, University of Stirling; Dr Alex Webb, University of the West of Scotland
  • Navigating the Digital University. Results from a Student/Staff Survey, Professor William Webster and Jacinto Fekayamala, University of Stirling
  • Returning the Data Gaze: Data Activism in Higher Education and Beyond, Dr Terrie-Lynn Thompson, University of Stirling
  • Digital Rentiership in Higher Education: The Future of Personal Data Governance, Dr Janja Komljenovic, Lancaster University
  • Teaching During the Pandemic: A Privacy Perspective, Dr Rossana Ducato, University of Aberdeen
  • Telling Surveillance Stories in the Digital University, Dr Jen Ross, University of Edinburgh; Dr Anna Wilson, University of Stirling
  • Keynote Presentation: The Cloud Campus: Imagining and Investing in the Digital Future of Higher Education, Dr Ben Williamson, University of Edinburgh
  • Panel Discussion on the Consequences of Digitization in Higher Education. Featuring: Dr Ben Williamson, University of Edinburgh; Professor Kirstie Ball, University of St Andrews; Dr Peter Flett, University of Stirling; Scottish Information Commisioner 

More about the Digital Escalate project can be found here.

This event is part funded by the EU ERASMUS+ KA2 programme (project no. 2019-1-RO01-KA203- 063214),