Department of Sociology

Department of


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Phone AppMedia, Information and Surveillance

This cluster develops sociologies of the digital including critical studies of the latest media, data, information technologies, and networks. Social media, visual media, ‘smart’ technologies and digital data traces are all research topics in this group. The area draws on and develops related research in feminist, science-and-technology studies and cultural studies. In the past three decades, participants have achieved prominence for their pioneering and award winning work on the historical sociology of communications in Canada, the critique of the "information society," investigating "digital divides" in Canada and abroad, and the rapid rise of digital surveillance. Insights from disciplinary areas such as cultural geography, philosophy and history are vital to the cluster, which also has a close working relationship with the Surveillance Studies Centre.

Currently Funded Projects
Cybersecurity and the making of 'digital territory'
Norma Möllers (PI) SSHRC Insight Development Grant 2017-2019 $57,391
Big Data Surveillance
David Lyon (PI) SSHRC Partnership Grant 2015-20 $2.5 million
iTimes? Understanding the temporal dynamics of everyday life in the digital age
Martin Hand (PI) SSHRC Insight Grant 2015-19  $93,279
Smarter Cities? Big Data, Ubiquitous Surveillance and Urban Management in Canada, the USA, and the UK
David Murakami-Wood (PI) SSHRC Insight Grant   $296,980    


Recent Completed Funded Projects
Persistent Traces and Potential Memories: emerging technologies, conventions and practices of memory-making in the digital era
Martin Hand (PI) SSHRC Standard Grant 2011-15   $57,946
Major Collaborative Research Initiative: “The New Transparency: Surveillance as Social Sorting”, 7-year collaborative research project
David Lyon (Director) SSHRC MCRI 2008-15   $2,500,000
Privacy implications of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in Canada
David Lyon (Coordinator), David Murakami-Wood (Co-Investigator) Office of the Federal Privacy Commissioner   2013-14  $50,000 
Organizational and Individual Behaviour and Personal Information Protection in the Age of Social Media
David Lyon (Overseas Partner)  Japan Society for the Promotion of Science 2012-15   $65,000
Surveillance and Public Safety in Tokyo
David Murakami-Wood (PI) Japan Society for the Promotion of Science 2013-14   $40,000
National Security and Personal Information
David Lyon (PI), David Murakami-Wood (Co-investigator) Office of the Federal Privacy Commissioner   2010-11  $50,000 
Cooperation on Science and Technology (COST) Action (2009-13), Living in Surveillance Societies.
David Murakami-Wood (Co-investigator/Associate) European Science Foundation, 2009-13   $4,000,000 
Analogue to Digital: objects, processes and practices of digital imaging and photography
Martin Hand (PI) SSHRC Standard Research Grant 2006-2010   $48,344
Faculty Experts
BURFOOT, Annette
Phone: (613) 533-6000 x 74475
Research Areas: Visual Science Studies; Reproductive Technologies; Cultural Studies; Visual Culture
HAND, Martin
Phone: (613)533-6000 x 74494
Research Areas: Digital Culture; Memory; Visual Culture; Consumer Culture
LYON, David
Phone: (613) 533-6000 x 74489
Research Areas: Surveillance; Identification; Biometrics; Histories & Cultures of Surveillance

Phone: (613) 533-6000 ext. 74449
Research Areas: Science & Technology Studies, infrastructure and social order, technoscience and the state, neoliberal science, cybersecurity & surveillance

Phone: (613) 533-6000 x 74490
Research Areas: Surveillance & Security; Cities & Globalization; War & Terrorism