Special Section CfP: Meeting societal challenges through value sensitive design


Meeting societal challenges through value sensitive design

There are many societal challenges confronting information systems (IS) designers. Not least amongst these are moral and social challenges. As the leader of AI research puts it “Technology is not value neutral, and technologists must take responsibility for the ethical and social impact of their work” (DeepMind, https://deepmind.com/blog/why-we-launched-deepmind-ethics-society/ ). One way to achieve this is through value sensitive design (VSD). VSD is a design approach which puts ethics into practice. It is an approach which began and still dominates in IS. But the VSD paradigm has opened new debates in design in other disciplines, including AI; Brain-computer interface; Engineering education; Game design; Health informatics; Robotics; and Transportation systems.

VSD enables human-centred approaches which not only prescribe a reflection on the users’ or human ethics but also recognizes the complex notion of human values, well-beingness, social sensitivity, personhood, and the unique agency and dimensionality of the human users and various human artifacts. Thus, VSD has a close relationship to IS design communities. IS design literature argues that together the technology-centric and the human-centric perspectives offer greater insights and account for more enriched design than either on their own. This serves to progress the understanding of design in the IS discipline along a much broader front, in line with the long IS research traditions such as sociomateriality, Scandinavian human-centred tradition, participatory and sociotechnical research in IS.

Some problem domains are heavily informed by human values, particularly the design of healthcare solutions and climate or planetary health system solutions. VSD places designers’ focus on human values and respects both the design community for better design thinking, and design problems for better articulation from real-world contexts. Existing studies offer design methodologies, frameworks, models, methods, which may provide broader perspectives that may be viewed as supporting knowledge and principles grounded to conceptual, empirical and technical aspects, but not prescriptive of specific paradigms. Our objective is to widen the boundary of VSD in IS. We are open to accept any forms of articles including case studies, empirical investigations, theoretical analyses, literature reviews, theory development papers, research essays, ethnographies, narratives and commentary papers.

Specific areas of interest for the special section
Rather than a list of topics, we encourage wide contributions. Contributions might address:
• Culturally sensitive VSD
• Value elicitation in cross cultural contexts
• Sociotechnical systems, which include considerations in design processes
• IS governance
• IS for vulnerable communities
• Practices relevant to IS practitioners and managers which reflect moral and social value considerations
• Privacy by design
• Application of VSD practices, tools or techniques in education
• Implications of VSD practices for policy makers

AJIS submission and author guidelines for AJIS must be followed and are available at the following URL http://journal.acs.org.au/index.php/ajis/about/submissions

• Initial paper submission deadline: September 30, 2020.
• Initial round of review to be completed by: November 30, 2020.
• Revised paper submission deadline: January 31, 2021.
• Second round of review to be completed by: March 31, 2021.
• Submission of accepted papers for journal copyediting processes: May 31, 2021.
• Publication of special section papers: June 2021.

Section Editors
Dr Anisha Fernando, SAIBT, University of South Australia, SA, Australia
Dr Kirsten Wahlstrom, University of South Australia, SA, Australia
Professor Shah Miah, Newcastle Business School, The University of Newcastle, Australia
Professor Oliver Burmeister, Charles Sturt University, NSW, Australia