Inventing the Social published by Mattering Press

The edited volume ‘Inventing the Social‘ edited by Noortje Marres, Michael Guggenheim and myself has been published by Mattering Press. The book “showcases recent efforts to develop new ways of knowing society that combine social research with creative practice. With contributions from leading figures in sociology, architecture, geography, design, anthropology, and digital media, the book provides practical and conceptual pointers on how to move beyond the customary distinctions between knowledge and art, and on how to connect the doing, researching and making of social life in potentially new ways.

Presenting concrete projects with a creative approach to researching social life as well as reflections on the wider contexts from which these projects emerge, this collection shows how collaboration across social science, digital media and the arts opens up timely alternatives to narrow, instrumentalist proposals that seek to engineer behaviour and to design community from scratch. To invent the social is to recognise that social life is always already creative in itself and to take this as a starting point for developing different ways of combining representation and intervention in social life.”

Inventing the Social contains contributions by Nerea Calvillo, Bernd Kräftner, Judith Kröll, Christian Nold, Mike Michael, Andrés Jaque, Nigel Clark, Fabian Muniesa, Martin Savransky, Marsha Rosengarten, Carolin Gerlitz, Christopher M. Kelty and Lucy Kimbell as well as Noortje Marres, Michael Guggenheim and myself.

Energy Babble book published by Mattering Press

The book ‘Energy Babble‘, authored by Andy Boucher, Bill Gaver, Tobie Kerridge, Mike Michael, Liliana Ovalle, Matthew Plummer-Fernandez, and myself, has been published by Mattering Press. The book tells “the story of a set of computational devices called Energy Babbles. The product of a collaboration between designers and STS researchers, Energy Babbles are like automated talk radios obsessed with energy. Synthesised voices, punctuated by occasional jingles, recount energy policy announcements, remarks about energy conservation made on social media, information about current energy demand and production, and comments entered by other Babble users.”

Studio Studies out now in paperback

The edited collection ‘Studio Studies: Operations, Topologies & Displacements‘, published by Routledge and part of the CRESC series, has now been released in paperback. From the book description:

Studio Studies is an agenda setting volume that presents a set of empirical case studies that explore and examine the studio as a key setting for aesthetic and material production. As such, Studio Studies responds to three contemporary concerns in social and cultural thought: first, how to account for the situated nature of creative and cultural production; second, the challenge of reimagining creativity as a socio-materially distributed practice rather than the cognitive privilege of the individual; and finally, to unravel the parallels, contrasts and interconnections between studios and other sites of cultural-aesthetic and technoscientific production, notably laboratories. By enquiring into the operations, topologies and displacements that shape and format studios, this volume aims to demarcate a novel and important object of analysis for empirical social and cultural research as well to develop new conceptual repertoires to unpack the multiple ways studio processes shape our everyday lives.”

Aesthetics & intimate entanglements

Yesterday I presented the paper ‘Aesthetics and Affect: Engaging Energy Communities’ – co-authored with Mike Michael and Liliana Ovalle – at the two-day Intimate Entanglements workshop at the University of York. The workshop, organised by Joanna Latimer (University of York) and Daniel Lopez (Universitat Oberta de Catalunya) and sponsored by the Sociological Review Foundation, explored the notion of intimacy in knowledge-making practices and socio-material relations.