Research cluster

Critical Data

Researching the political and social dimensions of data-driven and AI technology.

“The Critical Data Studies Cluster is an interdisciplinary initiative that welcomes people from across the University and beyond who study datafication and data-driven systems.”

Morgan Currie, Karen Gregory and Alex Taylor, Critical Data Studies Cluster Leads

Critical Data Studies offers a space for scholars who use critique to study data-driven and AI technical systems. Critical approaches interrogate the structures enabling data-driven tech and AI that too often elide their social, legal and political economic dimensions. Critique allows us to imagine – and build – more socially just alternatives.

Meet our researchers

Alex Taylor headshot

Alex Taylor

Reader in Design Informatics
Karen Gregory headshot

Karen Gregory

Senior Lecturer in Sociology
Morgan Currie headshot

Morgan Currie

Senior Lecturer in Data and Society

Workshops & Events

Fred Domer makes an adjustment to the position of a unit before it is tested in an anechoic chamber in the Payload Checkout Facility at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL).

Book Launch – Tor: From the Dark Web to the Future of Privacy

24 April 2024

In the seminar, Ben Collier will introduce the new book, Tor: From the Dark Web to the Future of Privacy (MIT Press, 2024).


Independent Accounts: Stories of Expertise and Politics in the New York City Budget since 1989

13 May 2024

Join Professor Dan Bouk for ‘Independent Accounts: Stories of Expertise and Politics in the New York City Budget since 1989’.


Past events

Data Rights and Literacy in the Datafied Society

A laptopogram displaying a dataset as cloud-like clusters of black blobs on a neutral background. There are three larger collections, almost resembling a map, with some data points leaking out into the negative space.

Datafied Publics: Inaugural Event for EFI Critical Data Studies Cluster

Reimagining Platforms Symposium

Got something to share?

If you are interested in collaborating, we’d love to hear from you. We also welcome proposals for seminars and workshops – get in touch to discuss how we can work together.

Get in touch

Study opportunities in Critical Data Studies


MSc DIGITAL Sociology

'data has a better idea' lettering printed on window

Understand and gain the foundation for analysing the complex ways that digital technologies and data shape society, institutions, social relations, and culture. Develop essential social and data science skills to explore topics such as political protest, misinformation, future of work, bias and discrimination, and digital mobility. 


MSc Science and Technology in Society

inside space port

Science and technology are powerful agents of change. But government policies, economies, cultures and values shape the development and direction of scientific research and technological innovation. You will explore and examine the complex and rapidly evolving relationships between science, technology, innovation and society. 


MSc Data Science, Technology and Innovation

lines of code on a screen

Develop knowledge and awareness of data intensive applications, and learn to think critically and creatively about governance, ethics and other social issues, and how they interact with technologies. Gain interdisciplinary research skills and data science expertise in both qualitative and quantitative disciplines.  


MA/MSc in Design Informatics

3d model masks in different colours

Gain the foundation for integrating design thinking and data science with an emphasis on exploring the role of data-driven technologies in society and the potential for social good. You will develop an ethically aware, critically reflective technical practice combining theory and research with making and hacking. 


MSC Future Governance

Technology and data are transforming governance across the globe. Explore and analyse the challenges and opportunities that big data brings to the future of democracy. Develop leading-edge knowledge and skills to help shape the world – and your career – by driving positive change. 



Rabbit ears poking out of teacup

Ethical design, and the use and governance of artificial intelligence and other data-intensive technologies, are critical to our future. Gain the interdisciplinary skills and knowledge to navigate complex systems and roles with transparency, fairness, and respect for individual and human rights, and social needs.  

Join us to challenge, create, and make change happen.