Lecture on November 14th, 2019
Market Discipline and the Algorithmic Rule of Law
Dan L. Burk, University of California, Irvine
About the lecture
Our modern information society is now permeated by automated systems that coerce preferred behaviors through a combination of surveillance and algorithmic feedback. Major Internet platform businesses are built around such behavioral structures, imposing the discipline of the marketplace on their subjects. Increasingly, such automated systems are also being incorporated into legal decision-making, to determine criminal culpability, civil liability, and other legal status. Proposals for “personalized law” further suggest that data profiles can be used to tailor legal expectations to each individual, enhancing both legal efficiency and autonomy. In this lecture I will map out the intersection between the social construction of markets and the social construction of algorithms in the context of legal decision-making. I will argue that the algorithmic categorization can be expected to generate unexpected and perverse outcomes when used to determine legal status, and that we must begin to identify the contexts in which to curtail or restrict the algorithmic rule of law.
About the speaker
Dan L. Burk is Chancellor’s Professor of Law at the University of California, Irvine, where he was a founding member of the law faculty. An internationally prominent authority on issues related to high technology, he teaches and writes on patent law, copyright, and related topics. Professor Burk holds a B.S. in Microbiology (1985) from Brigham Young University, an M.S. in Molecular Biology and Biochemistry (1987) from Northwestern University, a J.D. (1990) from Arizona State University, and a J.S.M. (1994) from Stanford University. He is the author of numerous papers on the legal and societal impact of new technologies, drawing on interdisciplinary insights from social science, physical science, and the humanities. During the Fall of 2019, he will be a Senior Visiting Fellow at the Weizenbaum Institute for the Networked Society in Berlin.
photo credit: UCI
Thursday, 14. November 2019, 18:15-19:45
Main Campus, lecture hall H
poster lecture Dan L. Burk [pdf]
programme "Taming the Machines" [pdf] in winter 2019/20