This paper analyses the accountability problems in the deployment of big data in social governance by reviewing a core mechanism of the Social Credit System. The System subjects individuals to “joint punishments” that would substantially affect their interests across various fields of social lives, if their credit records process the traits determined by state datasets of social credit. The paper examines three factors that disrupt the existing mechanisms holding the government accountable for its decisions: (1) the privatisation and (2) semi-automation of decision making, and (3) the covertly imposed correlation of legally irrelevant factors. In exploring the approaches to addressing the accountability defects, it stresses the role of transparency as well as civic engagement pertaining to the quality of credit data, to the algorithm of credit rating, and to the relevance of credit records concerning different categories of behaviour to impose punishments legitimately.
Our 2020 Annual Conference was scheduled to be held at the University of Wrocław in Poland on July 9-11, 2020.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the ICON·S Executive Committee has decided to postpone our 2020 Conference to 2021. Our next Annual Conference will take place from July 8-10, 2021, in Wrocław, Poland.
Procedural details regarding the organization of the 2021 Conference will follow in the months ahead.Join ICON•S