News

 
We aim at using this space to harvest relevant news in regard to the project and its members (remarkable steps, meetings, agreements, incorporations, new tools, achievements…). 
 
Every BITrum member is invited to keep this space alive, with whatever is considered relevant. Any announcement will be received by the editorial coordination board with their arms well opened.

Editorial Coordination Board

    Díaz Nafría, José María: jdian@unileon.es
    Salto Alemany, Francisco: francisco.salto@unileon.es
    Pérez-Montoro, Mario: perez-montoro@ub.edu

Index

 

Recent announcements

  • BITrum convenes a Symposium in the IS4IS Summit Vienna in June 2015 [Versión española]Call for Contributions: Weaving the understanding of information Track within the IS4IS Summit Vienna 2015 As co-organisers of the Summit, BITrum will coordinate this track designed to ...
    Posted 21 Jan 2015, 11:35 by José María Díaz Nafría
  • BITrum co-organises the third edition of the interdisciplinary workshop on social networks Social Networks,globalization and inequality  An Interdisciplinary Approach  19-21 September 2014 :: Sierra Pambley :: León :: Spain  Following the line of international courses and scientific gatherings carried out during the past ...
    Posted 29 Nov 2014, 14:30 by José María Díaz Nafría
  • 2013 BITrum Activity Report [Versión española] Since the past general Assembly in September 2012 (held in San Isidoro in the mid of an Interdisciplinary Workshop on Social Networks) many things have been going on ...
    Posted 11 Feb 2014, 16:55 by José María Díaz Nafría
  • BITrum welcomes new members [Versión española]  Nothing is more important to the fulfilment of our objectives than gathering efforts and enthusiasm around them, thus nothing can be more effusively saluted than the willing to ...
    Posted 18 Aug 2014, 18:17 by José María Díaz Nafría
  • Workshop: Understanding Complexity, January 27-30, 2014, León (Spain) Understanding complexity: systems, emergence and evolutionCase study: the city (Workshop) Since 16/1/2014 at 12 am, the seminar "Understanding Complexity" will be active for registration in the website ...
    Posted 21 Jan 2014, 11:48 by José María Díaz Nafría
  • IEEE 2014 Conference on Norbert Wiener in the 21st Century 24-26 June 2014, Boston MA  http://21stcenturywiener.org/  In the co-organisation of this meeting BITrum is involved through the collaboration with the International Center of Information Ethics (ICIE ...
    Posted 17 Jan 2014, 15:12 by José María Díaz Nafría
  • BITrum co-organises the second edition of the interdisciplinary workshop on social networks Summer Course and International Workshop: Social Networks, from communicating to solidary networks (an interdisciplinary approach)13 -15 September, 2013 :: Sierra Pambley :: León :: SpainContinuing the series of international events organised ...
    Posted 29 Nov 2014, 14:12 by José María Díaz Nafría
Showing posts 1 - 7 of 26. View more »

BITrum convenes a Symposium in the IS4IS Summit Vienna in June 2015

posted 19 Jan 2015, 02:01 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 21 Jan 2015, 11:35 ]

Call for Contributions:
Weaving the understanding of information

Track within the IS4IS Summit Vienna 2015

As co-organisers of the Summit, BITrum will coordinate this track designed to re-launch the fabric of the glossariumBITri. Both the new journal and the activities started in Ecuador offer a fruitful arena for BITrum's objectives. The unification endeavour, to which our Vienna colleagues have trend, represents an exceptional opportunity to surmount the differences often hindering the weaving of a common understanding of information, as we aim to. We hope to meet you in Vienna!

Objectives


Is it possible to build a coherent model of information that bridges vested interests across the sciences? In the past two decades, efforts have been made toward a common understanding of information, but concurrently and even to a larger extent, this understanding has been scattered by specialised disciplines focused on their disjoined insights. In a practical context, this opposition is analogous to the one established between those advocating for information as a “commons” and those promoting the commodification of information. Whereas the former consider information as necessarily attached to a larger cultural and societal basis, the latter deem information as a kind of asset that can be used for the own benefit.

Despite the universality of “information” as a concept, we still lack a sort of continuity in the fabric of concepts each discipline weaves around information. Beyond the kind of “interdisciplinarity” in which the scientific concept of information has been entangled, a strong interdisciplinary or even a trans-disciplinary approach may bridge the gap. A group of scholars after several years of attempting to weave the understanding of information across disciplines (http://glossarium.bitrum.unileon.es/glossary), now calls for summing up efforts in this endeavour to seed lights into the common enterprise of properly addressing the informational phenomena in physical, biological, cognitive, social, and technical realms. We ask: What formal tools enable us to capture the different perspectives? What must be clarified in the web of related concepts to enable a common understanding? What common theoretical soil can we plough to build up an inclusive information society?


Moderators


José María Díaz Nafría, Universidad de León, Spain; Senescyt, Ecuador; Munich University of Applied Sciences, Germany
Marcus Abundis, Bön Informatics, Switzerland
Francisco Salto Alemany, Universidad de León, Spain; BITrum, Spain; UTI Research Group

Subjects and scope


Papers that help clarify concepts, metaphors, theories or problems concerning information are welcomed, for example: What is information content? How can we account for the essential fuzziness of awareness and morphogenesis? What is the relation between information and knowledge, information and energy, information and computation? What are the logical properties of informational states? Is an evolutionary concept of information pervasive enough to cover all information phenomena?

Further, papers that help develop the glossariumBITri’s network are encouraged, whether they present a new node (concept, metaphor, theory or problem) or a critic, discussion or extension of an already weaved node. Some proposals may be added early (prior to IS4IS) to the interactive-glossariumBITri, which will then be interconnected with other online media to stimulate open discussions on hot topics. A selection of relevant contributions will be collected in a special issue of glossariumBITri-journal.

Target groups


  • Scientists from any field willing to look beyond their disciplinary borders towards an interdisciplinary understanding of information;
  • BITrum members; UTI members
  • Scientists and technologists committed to the development of a general or unified understanding of information;
  • Scientists and technologists committed to develop the formal underpinnings of a general science of information

Important Dates, Submission, Information


Submission deadline: 27 February 2015
Notification of acceptance: 20 March 2015

Submissions: http://sciforum.net/conference/isis-summit-vienna-2015/page/instructions

Information about IS4IS Summit Vienna 2014: http://summit.is4is.org/

BITrum co-organises the third edition of the interdisciplinary workshop on social networks

posted 29 Nov 2014, 11:29 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 29 Nov 2014, 14:30 ]

Social Networks,globalization and inequality  
An Interdisciplinary Approach  

19-21 September 2014 :: Sierra Pambley :: León :: Spain  

Following the line of international courses and scientific gatherings carried out during the past three years to promote interdisciplinary studies, BITrum co-organises an international course on social networks in collaboration with Universidad de León and the institutions involved in the PRIMER initiativeSuch initiative continues and broadens the horizon of domusBITae initiative, preserving the commitment of developing interdisciplinary information studies. This endeavor is now strengthened through the decision of some Ecuadorian public institutions to develop BITrum's activities in this field. This commitment has been manifested in this occasion through the participation of 3 researchers of the Universidad Estatal Península de Santa Elena (UPSE), the professors: Villao, Orozco and Torres. The event includes a workshop aimed at developing the exposition Geography of Inequality, in collaboration with Le Monde Diplomatique.

2013 BITrum Activity Report

posted 22 Jan 2014, 16:17 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 11 Feb 2014, 16:55 ]

Since the past general Assembly in September 2012 (held in San Isidoro in the mid of an Interdisciplinary Workshop on Social Networks) many things have been going on in BITrum’s arena:
  1. Two monographs related to the social aspects of information have gone out of the presses while two other, related to systematic approaches, will come out soon.
  2. Two major public events have been held in May and September 2014, linked to other online and offline activities along the year;
  3. A new international initiative aimed at the PRomotion of Interdisciplinary Research and Education (PRIMER) have been set up, consolidating previous efforts and collaborations, and specifically gathering the support of a significant number of institutions;
  4. BITrum have also collaborated with other projects and institutions in relevant areas to the deployment of BITrum’s objectives.
  5. New members have been welcomed into BITrum Group, who has clearly enriched our sail with their contributions;
  6. A number of new article proposals have been received to enhance the GlossariumBITri, whose audience has keep on growing;
  7. Some BITrum Members have authored along the period some significant bibliographic contributions to the understanding of information in its polyhedral being.

But to know what we are really talking about, let us see these points a little more in detail:

Collective works


http://bitrumcontributions.wordpress.com/2013/03/23/new-icts-and-social-media-revolution-counter-revolution-and-social-change/
In December 2012 The Spanish Edition of Le Monde Diplomative published a special issue with a selection of contributions to the Social Networks event held in September 2012 (acess). Other contributions to the events, convened by BITrum since December 2011, were collected in the monograph issued by the International Review of Information Ethics and co-editied by Wolfgang Hofkirchner and J.M. Díaz Nafría together with C. Coenen (acess). In the BITrum’s blog of contributions (in English, in Spanish) you can find links to the collective and specific contributions.

For the contributions done to the 2013 events, two further collective works are in press: The special issue of the Austrian Journal Systems “Facing complexity: networks, systems and the information society” (LINK), a new issue on Social Networks in the Spanish version of Le Monde Diplomatique, compiling a selection of Spanish texts.

Organised events


http://primer.unileon.es/events/open-system-thinking
In May 2013, we held the Workshop “Open System Thinking: at the crossroad of a complex world”, in Sierra Pambley, León, counting with the participation of veteran colleagues as Wolfgang, Gordana, José María, Paco, and new ones: Julian Marcelo, Francisco Álvarez, Enrique Díez, Mahmoud Rasmi, Marcelo León, Mauricio Ortiz, as well as other frequent collaborators. Linked to this event, we also convened a webinar at the end of the Month. In the portal of the event you can access to the contributions, videos of the lectures, and other materials (access).


http://primer.unileon.es/events/SN2013
In September 2013, we held a second edition of the workshop on social networks, in this occasion under the motto “from communicating to solidary networks (an interdisciplinary approach)” in Sierra Pambley, in which several BITrum colleagues had the occasion to meet: Peter Fleissner, Wolfgang Hofkirchner, Julian Marcelo, Paco Alvarez, Mahmoud Rasmi, Enrique Díez, Mauricio Ortiz, Paco Salto, José María Díaz, as well as other frequent collaborators. Linked to this summer event, we organised a Soundpainting Workshop and a couple of Webinars during Fall 2013 gathering further participation. In the portal of the event you can access to the contributions, videos of the lectures, and other materials (access).

PRIMER initiative


http://primer.unileon.es/

This initiative expands the interdisciplinary conception of BITrum to other knowledge areas, though taking information studies as a paradigmatic case. It was discussed in 2012 and set up at the beginning of 2013 according to a strategic statement aimed to provide support to the most of the activities held past year and to be presented as a candidate to the new Erasmus+ programme of the EC in April 2014. Among other activities we developed a new web linked to BITrum web-system in which the related events has been informationally hosted. The supporting effort of the participating institutions have been decisive for the ongoing success of the initiative which so far has gather some hundreds of participants. More details of the activities, rationale and collaboration network can be found in PRIMER portal. 

Collaborations


As a result of the deployed activities BITrum has collaborate with a number of institutions and projects beyond the mentioned PRIMER network:
  • With the International Society for Information Studies (ISIS) we have keep our collaboration setting up its information system based on domusBITae concept.
  • Several events in Spain and Germany have been enriched by our collaboration with the Institut für Design Science (IDS), hub of the project Foundations of philosophy we have also contributed to, and the Observatory of the Cybersociety (OCS).
  • Together with the International Center for Information Ethics (ICIE), and the American IEEE, we are co-organising an Information Ethics panel for the 21 Century Norber Wiener IEEE Conference, June 2014, Boston.
  • With University of León, and besides the organisation of most remarkable events, we have contributed with the projects: (i) Impact of ICTs in civic attitudes in Education; (ii) Education in values: inquiry into the hidden syllabus; and (iii) MyUniversity, eDemocracy in the European Higher Education System.

New Members


Nothing is more important to the fulfilment of our objectives than gathering efforts and enthusiasm around them, thus nothing can be more effusively saluted than the willing to participate in the group of new researchers who have indeed amounted new contributions, proposals, ideas…

First we must grateful mention Francisco Álvarez and Julian Marcelo, who were actually part of the group in the past General Assembly but not properly presented to the rest of the group, both have done significant contributions in the past years in the areas of Philosophy of Science and Technology and Information Uncertainty respectively; but we also joyful greet Enrique Díez, who has contributed in the field of ICT and education as well as in organisational matters, Paz Benito, expert in geography and co-organiser of upcoming events; Marcelo León, expert in regional economic development and contributor to some webinars held in May and December, and promotor of the collaboration with Ecuador; Cecile Malaspina, expert in aesthetics and translator of Simondon and Morin, who has contributed to the event recently held;  Mahmoud Rasmi, expert in aesthetics and finances and contributor to several activities since past year; Balu Athreya, interested in clarifying information phenomena in medical concerns and eager to lead an article of glossariumBITri regarding the issue; and Mauricio Ortiz, student of mechanical engineering who has widely contributed to the deployment of the PRIMER initiative. (See members' presentation)

GlossariumBITri


As we informed past year, the visibility of the glossariumBITri has keep on growing, even without taking care of being indexed or referred in public bibliographic catalogues until recently. The number of visits has grown in the same proportion as past years, and readers come now from all over the globe, concentrating the Latin American countries the higher audience.  The achieved impact can be somehow reflected in the maximum figure of 10.413 pages visited in past October (the figures below show the number of visits between 1/1/2010 and 31/12/2013, excluding visits done to the domain bitrum.unileon.es).


Concerning new content proposals, there is a number of new contributions that have been forwarded by different authors covering new areas. Insofar as one of our objectives was to facilitate the visibility of the contributions through different publishing means, and while TripleC (with whom we had agree the publication of selected articles) has significantly changed its orientation as to cover the areas of the glossary, we have been hesitating about what to do next. We have finally taken the resolution of opening an electronic open journal, hosted in some of our collaborating universities, for the periodical publication of new and reviewed articles. In the next general assembly we would like to discuss some details.

Bibliographic contributions


Carlos Aguilar accomplished his doctoral thesis, “Information processing of audiovisual contents”, with honours. Wolfgang Hofkirchner's book “Emergent Information” was published by World Scientific Publishing. Therein, our colleague completes previous works in the matter and deepens in the aspect we already discussed in the Colloquium BITae (León, 2009). Rainer Zimmermann's book “Kreativität und Form” (creativity and form) was published by Springer, containing interesting insights for the foundations of informational dynamics, social games and networks and the related problem of emergence and evolution of meaning. Rafael Capurro's co-authored book “Digital Whoness” was published by Ontos. Therein he tackles the problem of identity, privacy and liberty in the information era with renewed breadth and depth.

A number of articles and contributions to collective works, difficult to summarize, have been published by BITrum members concerning the understanding of information we encourage to share and discuss with the rest of the group through the BITrum blog of contributions and the BITrum’s Facebook-page newly open. All of them represent significant contributions we grateful cheer.




We hope this brief summary provides you a sufficient picture to be aware of BITrum’s activity and endeavour to develop our objectives. We are eager to keep on developing them, and to open more spaces of participation among all members. We would like to discuss with you the future course in the (off- and on-line) general assembly to be held next week coincident with a seminar held by Rainer Zimmermann in León, concerning the Understanding of complexity, with interesting regards to the conceptualization of information in relation to the dynamic of reality...

BITrum welcomes new members

posted 22 Jan 2014, 03:18 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 18 Aug 2014, 18:17 ]

Nothing is more important to the fulfilment of our objectives than gathering efforts and enthusiasm around them, thus nothing can be more effusively saluted than the willing to participate in the group of new researchers who have indeed amounted since 2012 new contributions, proposals, ideas… In name of the group our most cordial and grateful welcome.

First we must grateful mention Francisco Álvarez and Julian Marcelo, who were actually part of the group in the past General Assembly but not properly presented to the rest of the group, both have done significant contributions in the past years in the areas of Philosophy of Science and Technology and Information Uncertainty respectively; but we also joyful greet Enrique Díez, who has contributed in the field of ICT and education as well as in organisational matters, Paz Benito, expert in geography and co-organiser of upcoming events; Marcelo León, expert in regional economic development and contributor to some webinars held in May and December, and promotor of the collaboration with Ecuador; Cecile Malaspina, expert in aesthetics and translator of Simondon and Morin, who has contributed to the event recently held;  Mahmoud Rasmi, expert in aesthetics and finances and contributor to several activities since past year; and Balu Athreya, interested in clarifying information phenomena in medical concerns and eager to lead an article of glossariumBITri regarding the issue.

Francisco Álvarez Álvarez

(Islas Canarias, 1950), Professor of Logic and Philosophy of Science at UNED, Madrid and Founding Member of the Cybersociety Observatory. Doctor in Philosophy by the University of La Laguna where he was Professor of Logic from 1974 to 1984. He was Vice-chancellor for research and vice-chancellor for International Relations of UNED. He has ben associated researcher at the Darwin Collega, Cambridge, UK (1992-1993), researcher with chair of excellence CANACYT -México- in 1994. He has partaken in a number of national and international projects, particularly in the field of bounded axiological rationality, argumentation theory, the emergence of norms in scientific activity, knowledge transference, social and cultural transformations associated to ICTs.

Paz Benito del Pozo

Doctor in Geography and History. Expert in the analysis of industrial and urban areas. Professor at the Department of Geography of the Universidad de León. She has been EEC expert-consultant in industrial ruins (1991-1994), director of urban planning in Asturias (1994-1997), expert and advisor in territorial policy and regional planning in Asturias (1993-1995). She has been visiting professor at the universities of Turin and South California (2000, 2009 and 2011). She also spent periods in other European universities. President of the research group INVESTER of the University of León. Board Member of the Spanish section of the The International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage; Expert board for industrial heritage of Castilla y León; Board of the Spanish Association of Geographers, and Fellow of the Real Geographic Society.

Julian Marcelo Cocho

(Naval  Engineer and Computing Engineer; MSc. Industry Management; PhD. in Computing Engineering) Professor emeritus of information systems at the Universitat Politècnica de València. He is expert in information technology and Information Organisation and Management, fields in which it is worth highlighting his research in risk and security of systems  and projects of high complexity or general uncertanity. He has been scholar in several universities; international officer between 1982 and 1988, directing the UN's Intergovernmental Bureau for Informatics (IBI) and Board of News Agency IBIPRESS; direction of IBI's International Institut for Industrial Informatics. 

Cecile Malaspina

was trained as a curator in contemporary art at the Royal College of Art in London (2001) and has collaborated as assistant curator and researcher on exhibitions at the Tate Gallery before studying contemporary philosophy and critical theory (2005-2007) at the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy (CREMP) then at Middlesex University (now Kingston University). Her research into French epistemology led her to register for PhD at the University Denis Diderot, Paris 7, supervised by Prof Alain Leplege and Dr Iain Hamilton Grant, University of the West of England (2009 – ). She is translator of G. Simondon and E. Morin -among other French authors-.

Enrique Díez Gutiérrez

Doctor in Education Sciences from the Complutense University of Madrid; M.S. in Philosophy, B.A. Social Work, B.S. Social Education, B.S. Specialist in educational organization) he is Professor at the Faculty of Education, where he carries out teaching and research in the fields of intercultural education, ICTs in education, as well as gender and diversity education. He has participated in more than 15 R&D projects. He has published 13 books (among them Neoliberal globalization and its repercussions on education", 2007), 79 chapter books, 130 scientific articles, more than 140 contributions to national and international conferences, and numerous popular contributions in media (Biography in Wikipedia)

Balu Athreya

Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics at the Schools of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and the Thomas Jefferson University, both in Philadelphia. He graduated at the University of Madras (currently known as Chennai) in India. He did his postgraduate studies and research in pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. He is a pioneer in the field of pediatric rheumatology and has played a significant role in the elucidation of several new syndromes. He has published extensively in pediatrics and pediatric rheumatology. His current interest is in understanding the nature of information, its interplay with matter, energy and how defects in the structure and transmission of information lead to human diseases.

Marcelo León

is commercial Engineer, MSc in Social Education and Development, PhD in regional economic Development, and works as consultant and professor in the Universidad Tecnológica Equinoccial and the Universidad Estatal de Santa Elena in Ecuador. His research interests focus -among other areas- on the transition from the economy of autonomous agents to a popular and solidary economy based on current experiences of socio-economical change in Ecuador trascending the neo-liberal model intensively developed therein in previous decades. The analysis of this evolution in terms of the dynamic of social networks converges with the critical study of the information society.

Mahmoud Rasmi

Mahmoud Rasmi is a Part-Time Instructor of Philosophy at the Lebanese American University, and a PhD candidate in Philosophy at the University of Salamanca. In his PhD dissertation he focuses on aesthetics and the philosophy of art of Friedrich Schelling arguing for a tautegorical interpretation of the cinematic image taking as an example the films of the Russian director Andrei Tarkovsky. Some of his philosophical interests include film and philosophy, aesthetics and philosophy of art, Friedrich Schelling and German Idealism. Tentative title of the disseration: “Making Sense of Reality through Film. Andrei Tarkovsky and the Cinematic Image as Tautegory.”

Mauricio Ortiz Osorio

is student of mechanic engineering at the University of León, where he is member of the University council, social activist, and participant in research groups on education and interdisciplinarity. He has contributed organisationally and thematically in the deployment of PRIMER initiative. His research interest focus on information and system theory and particularly concerning politic-economical matters.



Workshop: Understanding Complexity, January 27-30, 2014, León (Spain)

posted 16 Jan 2014, 02:02 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 21 Jan 2014, 11:48 ]

Understanding complexity: systems, emergence and evolution

http://primer.unileon.es/events/UC2014
Case study: the city (Workshop)

Since 16/1/2014 at 12 am, the seminar "Understanding Complexity" will be active for registration in the website of Universidad de León. Other activities concerning BITrum will be therein included. As in previous ocassions, San Isidoro will offer us an exceptional framework as to develope fruitfull debates with our collegue Rainer Zimmermann, who has developed an exciting programme plenty of fundamental and intriguing questions.

Introduction

The problems that our contemporary societies are facing overwhelm the methods of the specialised scientific and professional disciplines. They demand –in order to harness our very existences– a decisive confrontation of the complexity in which our problems are rooted. The theory of systems offers a path for such confrontation whenever the crucial aspects of how complexity emerges, how it is structure, and how it evolves is properly addressed. Under this perspective the course aims at offering an introduction into the general foundations of systems with a view to the conceptualizing of energy and information, insofar as such conceptualizing can constitute a keystone for the effective articulation of scientific and practical disciplines. Such articulation is indeed the main goal of the European initiative PRIMER (PRomotion of Interdisciplinary Methodologies in Education and Research, http://primer.unileon.es) under which this event is convened, complementing other courses held during the past years.

The city constitutes a complex system example of particular interest in which almost all scientific and practical disciplines can be convened in order to exhaustively dealing with the dynamics of its complexity. Hence, the city will serve as paradigmatic case for the study of the emergence and dynamics of complex systems, addressing at the same time the relevant relation between design and ethics, which in urban planning is particularly clear.

Introductory Webinar: The social praxis in the theory of systems


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The thematic will be fundamentally developed by Rainer Zimmermann, from the Munich University of Applied Sciences and Clare Hall of Cambridge and director of the Institut für Design Science, who has previously participated and co-organised other PRIMER events. In the Webinar here available, broadcasted from Munich in October 2013, Prof. Zimmermann discusses about the groundings of social praxis in the theory of systems, advancing the topics that will be further elaborated in León during the seminary "Understanding Complexity"Gordana Dodig-Crnkovic, from the Swedish Mälardalen University, and J.M. Díaz Nafría will also contribute to the topic offering additional perspectives (s. programme).

IEEE 2014 Conference on Norbert Wiener in the 21st Century

posted 15 Nov 2013, 04:55 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 17 Jan 2014, 15:12 ]

24-26 June 2014, Boston MA 

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In the co-organisation of this meeting BITrum is involved through the collaboration with the International Center of Information Ethics (ICIE) directed by Rafael Capurro and represented by José María Díaz Nafría. You are therefore particularly invited and welcomed to partake. It is needless to say the relevant role of Wiener's work in the understanding of information and the potential to achieve an even better and wider understanding of information throughout the sciences.


Abstract Submission Deadline has been extended to: Jan 31th 2014


Call for Papers
   

 


BITrum co-organises the second edition of the interdisciplinary workshop on social networks

posted 9 Sep 2013, 15:33 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 29 Nov 2014, 14:12 ]

Summer Course and International Workshop: Social Networks, from communicating to solidary networks (an interdisciplinary approach)

13 -15 September, 2013 :: Sierra Pambley :: León :: Spain

Continuing the series of international events organised along the past two years concerning the promotion of interdisciplinary studies, BITrum co-organise once again an international summer course on social networks in collaboration with the institutions involved in the PRIMER initiative. Such initiative continues and broadens the horizon of domusBITae initiative, preserving the commitment of developing interdisciplinary information studies.

  • Portal of the event containing updated information
  • Evento Facebook
  • INSCRIPTION (attendance is free; certification requires a symbolic fee)
  • Hybid event: Offline and Online participation possible
  • An optional Soundpainting Workshop is included in which a Musical and Dramatic Performance concerning solidarity will be developed.

Workshop on Open Systems Thinking

posted 12 May 2013, 17:46 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 12 Jul 2013, 00:18 ]

At the crossroads of a complex world

May 15-17, 2013 :: Sierra Pambley :: León :: Spain 

The foreseen activities for the meeting include –besides the scientific gathering– an open course for the public (in Sierra Pambley) and a training activity for academics (in the Language Center of León University). Both can be followed through the virtual rooms of UNED. It constitutes a first milestone in the development of an international academic programme coordinated by University of León for the promotion of interdisciplinary studies; a project emerged from domusBITae initiative, which in turn was initiated by BITrum in 2010 (s. PRIMER initiative). The activity is a result of the collaboration among several European universities (Vienna University of Technology, Munich University of Applied Sciences, UNED, Mälardalen University –Sweden-, University of the Aegean –Greece) and other scientific institutions (BITrum, Bertalanffy Center for the Study of System Science, Cybersociety Observatory and MyUniversity project).


INTRODUCTION & OBJECTIVES

Interdisciplinarity in education and science represents a fundamental path for facing global challenges, as recognised by several international education and scientific policies –substantiated in important funding policies. This approach is rooted in the fact that the complexity of the problems concerning our modus vivendi –regarding its biospheric, geo-politic, intercultural and socio-economic dimensions– grows in higher degree than the capacity to cope with problems by science articulated through the traditional schema of subdivided specialities. Hence, the possibility to master the complexity of our problems will rely on the capacity to jump over the barriers between specialities and to success in the effective collaboration among them. Nevertheless, despite efforts is repeatedly observed the insufficient advance in the cooperation between scientific disciplines.
There is however science and technical methods, widely and successfully used for decades (for instance, cybernetics), used to jump over the borders of traditional disciplines in order to understand and steer systems of high complexity, as ecosystems, robots, socio-economic dynamics… In this workshop, a general outlook on methodologies for the combination of scientific and technical domains will be shown, aiming to range the challenges of the scientific organisation and the possibilities of a systematic and open approach to interdisciplinarity. It belongs to a coordinated effort among several European scientific and higher education institutions for the PRomotion of Interdisciplinary Methodologies in Education and Research (PRIMER) which integrates systems science, open innovation and design science. Through this “open system thinking” several scientific and educational projects are tackled dealing with different theoretical and practical complex problems. By hosting the event at the Sierra Pambley Foundation, who has been involved for 125 years in a movement devoted to the integral education through the articulation of culture and sciences, the venue in itself offers a living example of systematic facing complexity.

“New ICTs and Social Media: Revolution, Counter-Revolution and Social Change” – A monograph with prominent BITrum’s representation

posted 23 Mar 2013, 08:09 by José María Díaz Nafría   [ updated 23 Mar 2013, 16:18 ]

Monograph of the International Review of Information Ethics (IRIE), vol 18, edited by C. Coenen, W. Hofkirchner and J.M. Díaz Nafría

This special issue, recently published in the Journal chaired by our colleague Rafael Capurro, compiles among other works the contributions done in the International Event “Social networks: from indignation to change (ethical, political and aesthetical aspects)” held in the summer of 2012 in León, as a result of the cooperation among BITrum, the University of León (Spain), the Munich University of Applied Science and other institutions (hosted within this website). Besides the editorial work of three BITrum members (two acting as guest), the issue collects a good representation of articles authored by BITrum members: Rainer Zimmermann, Peter Fleissner, Julian Marcelo. These contributions delve into relevant aspects of BITrum’s endeavors, in particular regarding philosophical, economic and social dimensions.

The opening words of IRIE-editors provide a good outlook of the monography: 

“The internet is a revolution – there is no doubt and no discussion about it anymore. But is it also a revolution
of a second order: a (digital) revolution that causes or at least fuels a (real world) revolution? Gutenberg’s technique newly invented in the beginning of the 15th century did so. The revolutionary ability to print books instead of copying them by hand potentiated about a hundred years later one of Martin Luther’s revolutionary basic ideas: the concept of ‘sola scriptura’ – superordinating the (personal) reading of the fundamental texts of Christianity over the magisterium ecclesiae exclusively executed by the Christian authorities of these days. In fact, the driving idea of this issue in a nutshell was and is the question: What could be the revolutionary concept in analogy to the sola scriptura that might be propelled to a break through by the revolutionary abilities of the internet (in probably less than a hundred years though).

This issue does not give a simple and ultimate answer to this question (like we can do with Gutenberg in retrospect). But it gives some very appropriate suggestions and inspiring approaches. ICTs appear to enable or at least support certain new forms of political organizations (thematically oriented, loosely coupled, quickly gathered, and allowing for anonymous affiliation). They appear to be very different to "classical" forms of political organization and are used for actions targeted not only at national and international but also at local levels. Do ICTs therefore facilitate an increase in revolutionary acts, revolts or acts of resistance as political measures? On the other hand, does this ease of use in activist contexts deprave the revolutionary act to clicking an ‘I like it’ button? Is cursoriness the prize political movements heavily relying on the internet have to pay for their speed of constitution in and through the net?

Against the backdrop of the discussions that have taken place since the 1990s, the impacts, shortcomings and potentials of the use of new ICTs and social media by political activists must be further scrutinized. Besides a variety of political uses in Africa, Arabia, Asia and Latin America, the recent developments in Europe and North America also justify a closer look at the role of ICTs in movements aimed at ringing about radical social change. The revolts in Greece, the indignant movement in Spain and Occupy Wall Street all developed as a reaction to political and economic measures and policies that were more typical of developing countries in previous decades; this allows for interesting comparisons, for example with regard to differences between movements which claim and those which defend rights.

One if not ground yet record breaking implication we can state unerringly: These relevant and seminal questions have provoked and gathered more articles in a single IRIE issue than any other subject before. Or maybe it was the phenomenal work of our guest editors, their passion for the subject, their expertise in the field and/or their scientific network they contributed to this outstanding issue.”

Our colleague Carlos Aguilar culminates his doctoral thesis through a worthy unification of information theoretical perspectives

posted 21 Mar 2013, 10:34 by José María Díaz Nafría

In his doctoral thesis –guided by our colleagues Lydia Sánchez and Manuel Campos–, Carlos Aguilar tries to reconcile the concepts of information, situation and interpretation. Under the heading “Information processing of audiovisual contents”, Carlos tackles the fundamental purpose of developing a “theoretical model for the study of information content mediated by audiovisual vehicles, based upon the mathematical development of channel theory.” To that end, he nurtures Shannon’s approach with the situational one, and channel theory with the systematic study of interpretative mechanisms of audiovisual contents. In addition he develops a formal tool for the tensor treatment of information in audiovisual contents. His viewpoint is objectivist –or as he states, methodologically positivist – (position entirely coherent with the one manifested in the debate held on objectivity  during the Meeting of León 2008)

From BITrum group we wish to congratulate this crowning of  Carlos endeavor, which work have regularly pushed BITrum’s courses since its beginnings (Meeting in León, monography in triple, ICTs&Society Meeting, FIS2010 Congress and glossariumBITri). Our most heartfelt congratulation!

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