1975-1985-1995-2005 — the decennial Aarhus conferences have traditionally been instrumental for setting new agendas for critically engaged thinking about information technology. The conference series is fundamentally interdisciplinary and emphasizes thinking that is firmly anchored in action, intervention, and scholarly critical practice. With the title Critical Computing – between sense and sensibility, the 2005 edition of the conference marked that computing was rapidly seeping into everyday life.
In 2015, we see critical alternatives in alignment with utopian principles—that is, the hope that things might not only be different but also radically better. At the same time, radically better alternatives don’t emerge out of nowhere: they emerged from contested analyses of the mundane present and demand both commitment and labor to work towards them. Critical alternatives matter and make people reflect.
The fifth decennial Aarhus conference, Critical Alternatives, aims to set new agendas for theory and practice in computing for quality of human life.
While the early Aarhus conferences, from 1975 and onwards, focussed on computing in working life, computing today is influencing most parts of human life (civic life, the welfare state, health, learning, leisure, culture, intimacy, ...), thereby calling for critical alternatives in a general quality of life perspective.
We call for papers offering new agendas for alternatives with computing technologies — methodologically, theoretically, or through new forms of societal or otherwise critical engagements.
Current trends in research on computing for quality of life point to areas such as aesthetics, artistic practices, political activism and civic engagement as areas that could fruitfully inform the critical alternatives in computing discourse. Moreover, we expect to accept submissions from a broad range of perspectives including social science, humanities, engineering, computing, design etc.
Critical Alternatives in particular appreciates contributions that focus on the (technological) specifics of computing technologies related to quality of life.
Early bird registrations: June 25th, 2015
Workshops: 17-18 August, 2015 (details)
Conference: August 19-21, 2015 (program)
Please submit long and short papers at https://precisionconference.com/~aarhus