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Algorithmic Food Justice: Co-Designing More-than-Human Blockchain Futures for the Food Commons

Heitlinger, S. ORCID: 0000-0001-6148-350X, Houston, L., Taylor, A. ORCID: 0000-0001-6311-3967 and Catlow, R. (2021). Algorithmic Food Justice: Co-Designing More-than-Human Blockchain Futures for the Food Commons. Paper presented at the ACM Conference on ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, 8-13 May 2021, Online.

Abstract

The relationships that constitute the global industrial food system tend towards two dominant values that are creating unsustainable social and environmental inequalities. The first is a human-centered perspective on food that privileges humans over all other species. The second is a view of food as a commodity to be traded for maximum economic value, rewarding a small number of shareholders. We present work that explores the unique algorithmic affordances of blockchain to create new types of value exchange and governance in the food system. We describe a project that used roleplay with urban agricultural communities to co-design blockchain-based food futures and explore the conditions for creating a thriving multispecies food commons. We discuss how the project helped rethink algorithmic food justice by reconfiguring more-than-human values and reconfiguring food as more-than-human commons. We also discuss some of the challenges and tensions arising from these explorations.

Publication Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information: © the authors | ACM 2021. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here for your personal use. Not for redistribution. The definitive Version of Record is to be published in ACM Conference on ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (https://chi2021.acm.org/)
Publisher Keywords: Food justice, Commons, Blockchain, More-than-human design, Sustainability, Algorithmic governance, posthuman
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GF Human ecology. Anthropogeography
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Departments: School of Mathematics, Computer Science & Engineering > Computer Science > Human Computer Interaction Design
Date available in CRO: 31 Mar 2021 09:46
Date deposited: 31 March 2021
Date of acceptance: 31 January 2021
Date of first online publication: 6 May 2021
URI: https://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/25858
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Official URL: https://chi2021.acm.org/

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