Welcome! The Sawyer Seminar is back for Fall 2022 with a series of events.
Digital Health, defined by the FDA as including “categories such as mobile health (mHealth), health information technology (IT), wearable devices, telehealth and telemedicine, and personalized medicine” has the potential to empower patients to make better decisions about their own health while facilitating prevention, providing early diagnosis, surveillance, management and prediction of chronic conditions. New health technologies also help clinicians improve health outcomes through greater access to and use of patient data. At the same time, digital health poses a risk of reinforcing racial disparities in healthcare through algorithmic bias, digital redlining, tacit racism in clinical documentation, unrepresentative data, and the lack of diversity in the decision-makers and users of health informatics applications. Added to this, the potential compromise of patients’ privacy, the lack of health data integration, data overload issues, security concerns, and limited or inefficient data visualization are upstream and downstream obstacles to digital health’s potential to transform healthcare. Combined with technical anxiety and slow adoption of digital health innovation, these myriad factors limit the capacity of digital health to facilitate health equity.
Grappling with the problem that race and racism poses for digital health, and the great potential that digital health represents to reduce or exacerbate existing health disparities, requires discussion and inquiry across several domains of technical expertise, clinical experience, and critical humanities and social sciences. This conference aims to serve as a forum to engage with the opportunities and challenges/risks? of digital health and health informatics from historical, ethnographic, ethical, economic, and pragmatic perspectives. It invites submissions from a variety of methodological, theoretical, and multidisciplinary perspectives. Theoretical work that engages critically with the debate about the promises and pitfalls of digital health in the context of race and health equity are particularly welcome. We also welcome proposals for “hands-on” data sessions and workshops, as well as submissions (talks and hands-on sessions) from students, practitioners, IT professionals, and those employed in industry.
Sawyer Seminar: Precision and Uncertainty in a World of Data
The Sawyer Seminar on Precision and Uncertainty in a World of Data is organized by the Departments of Anthropology and the History of Medicine and the Center for Medical Humanities and Social Medicine at Johns Hopkins University. Throughout its two-year run (2019-2021), the Seminar will explore questions around what kinds of ethical and social issues are new about our Big Data moment, what has carried over from the past, and what kinds of methods and approaches might help us extend our understanding of this moment’s specificity.
On this website, you can find more information about the Seminar directors and staff, our schedule of events, notes on our past events, and resources that help explore data and society. We hope for this website to serve as an archive for what we have learned over the course of the Seminar, as well as a gateway for resources on data and society that will outlive the Seminar’s run. We encourage you to check out our latest events, projects, and commentary below:
- 29 April 2022 – For the Sake of the Climate: Meditations on Retooling the EconomyIn this roundtable we bring together a truly remarkable set of experts from the fields of climate economics, anthropology and sociology of the climate, and the theology… Read more “29 April 2022 – For the Sake of the Climate: Meditations on Retooling the Economy”
- 3 April 2022 – The Ethics and Philosophy of Teaching Violent HistoriesProfessor Furrukh Khan, from Lahore University of Management Sciences, interviews Professor Veena Das from Johns Hopkins University on the ethics and philosophy of teaching violent histories with… Read more “3 April 2022 – The Ethics and Philosophy of Teaching Violent Histories”
- 16 March 2022 – Eduardo Kac, Telepresence: Bio Art and Space PoetryThe Sawyer Seminar in partnership with the Center for Advanced Media Studies presents Eduardo Kac in conversation with physicist Mark Kamionkowski, poet Dora Malech, historian of science… Read more “16 March 2022 – Eduardo Kac, Telepresence: Bio Art and Space Poetry”
- 11 March 2022 – Forest Life, Scientific Practice, Climate PoliticsBringing together academics and practitioners of forest science, climate and forest policy, anthropology, and social studies of science, this workshop asks how climate imperatives remake the forest… Read more “11 March 2022 – Forest Life, Scientific Practice, Climate Politics”
- 4 Feb 2022 – Architecture of In/Security: Mapping Bombs, Bricks, and Militarization in Lahore4 Feb 2022 | 10:00 am – 12:00 pm EST Mergenthaler 426, Johns Hopkins Homewood campus for Zoom information: https://sawyer-2-4.eventbrite.com Sadia Shirazi – Asian American, Pacific Rim,… Read more “4 Feb 2022 – Architecture of In/Security: Mapping Bombs, Bricks, and Militarization in Lahore”
- 11 Feb 2022 – Climate Change and Institutional ImaginationIn this roundtable, the first event of the Sawyer Climate Workshop Series, we brought together an extraordinarily experienced set of individuals who have been involved either through… Read more “11 Feb 2022 – Climate Change and Institutional Imagination”
- 12.8.21 | Primary Sources, Computational Intelligence, and Discovering Connections Between FieldsDecember 8, 2021, 7-9:00 pm EST Tom Lippincott (digital humanities, Johns Hopkins University) Chris Cannon (english and classics, Johns Hopkins University) Combining the depth and flexibility of… Read more “12.8.21 | Primary Sources, Computational Intelligence, and Discovering Connections Between Fields”
- 11.15.21 | Sandra Laugier, “The Fact and Fiction of Television”When Cavell’s “The Fact of Television” was published in Daedalus in 1982, it was still very much one among “themes out of school”. Since the early 1980s, however,… Read more “11.15.21 | Sandra Laugier, “The Fact and Fiction of Television””
Header Images (Art Works) Credit:
Rachel Ara. “This Much I’m Worth (The Self-evaluating Artwork): Korean Version” in Vertiginous Data at National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea. Photo taken by Sumin Myung.
Sylvee Kim. “Trinity: Finance-Credo-Spirituality” in Vertiginous Data at National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea. Photo taken by Sumin Myung.
Danilo Zamboni. “PerspectivischeExplosionszeichnung” in Zugang für Alle: São Paulos Soziale Infrastrukturen at Pinakothek der Moderne, München, Germany. Photo taken by Sumin Myung.
Nam June Paik. “Video Chandelier No. 1” at Nam June Paik Art Center, Seongnam, South Korea. Photo taken by Sumin Myung.
Soyo Lee. “TV Garden: Notes” in Ecological Senses at Nam June Paik Art Center, Seongnam, South Korea. Photo taken by Sumin Myung.