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Winner Robert Chambers Award 2020

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DSAI are delighted to announce the winner of the Robert Chambers Award 2020 to recipients and co-authors Silvia Masiero and Soumyo Das, for their paper 'Where ICT4D Meets Data Justice: A study of COVID-19 Tracking in India'

Their paper highlights an important issue with immediate relevance – namely inequalities in technology uptake and its relationship to approaches to pandemic control in the context of COVID19. It also brings together design and justice approaches in relation to new technology. As such, the paper is both innovative and could have an impact on poverty reduction, by highlighting negative consequences of public health approaches to COVID-19 that disadvantage the economically disadvantaged in India.

While the research is largely based on secondary sources, the importance of the insights highlights merits further attention, and as the author highlights, further empirical research, when circumstances allow. In selecting the paper for the award, the judges noted, 

"This is an exceptionally thoughtful piece of research that examines the potentially dangerous consequences of data surveillance for poor and vulnerable populations. Excellent work with secondary sources under the difficult present conditions."

On winning the award, authors Silvia and Soumyo said, 

"It is our immense pleasure to accept the Robert Chambers Award. We hope our work can be of help in illuminating the links between development studies and data justice research, and the importance of studying COVID-19 responses from the combination of these two lenses."

About the authors:

Silvia MasieroSilvia Masiero is an Associate Professor of Information Systems at the Department of Informatics, University of Oslo. Her research operates within the area of information and communication technology for development (ICT4D), with a focus on the role of digital platforms in socio-economic development processes. She has conducted extensive work on the computerisation of India’s main food security programme, the Public Distribution System (PDS), and on the adoption of ICTs in core aspects of the Indian public sphere including elections, rural employment guarantees and programmes of social protection. Silvia is Secretary of the International Federation for Information Processing IFIP 9.4 Working Group on Implications of Information and Digital Technologies for Development, a member of the Association for Information Systems (AIS), and a member of the Editorial Board at Information Technology for Development.

Soumyo Das headshotSoumyo Das is a Ph.D. student in Management at Emlyon Business School, France. His research focusses on organizational use of digital technologies in developing countries, and with a particular emphasis on organizational trust and institutional logics. He is also interested on research in Critical Management Studies and ICT4D. Soumyo engages with the virtual world as /soumyoin. 

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