Close up of a round surveillance camera with a dark and blue background
Photo: Pixabay

Research funding for projects on AI and surveillance


A major interdisciplinary research project led by HDK-Valand has been granted almost a million euros to study AI-based surveillance and the conflict between security and an open society.
"It’s exciting to look at it from perspectives that aren’t just technical," says project manager Elena Raviola.

A research project led by Elena Raviola, professor of design management at HDK-Valand, has been granted 990,000 euros in research funding by the Society of Swedish Literature in Finland. Over a period of four years, the research team will study the tension between openness and security in the use of AI-based surveillance. 

“The project is largely about studying how artificial intelligence and machine learning are being used and developed in surveillance. It’s exciting to look at it from perspectives that aren’t just technical,” says Raviola, “and to see it in the broader social context as well.”

What the researchers primarily want to study are the tensions between the growing demand for security and the idea that the Nordic region is supposed to be the most open society in the world. In this project, they will study how different kinds of international borders work. 

“What we want to study are the borders between Sweden and Norway, which are very long, and the bridge between Sweden and Denmark, as well as several airports,” says Raviola. "These are different kinds of borders, and we expect that they will touch on several different issues. One major issue is going to be that of respect for privacy and private life.” 

It is a big project, and it will address that issue from many different perspectives. The research group includes scholars in the fields of anthropology, design studies, informatics, law, organisation studies, sociology, and science and technology studies. 

“I’m really looking forward to the interdisciplinary collaboration,” says Raviola. “It’s a project that brings together four different departments at the University of Gothenburg with two universities in Denmark and one in Norway.”

Participants in the project
  • Elena Raviola, PhD, Professor of Design Management, Academy of Art and Design, University of Gothenburg
  • Marie Eneman, PhD, Lecturer in Informatics, Dpt of Applied IT, University of Gothenburg
  • Jan Ljungberg, PhD, Professor in informatics, Dpt of Applied IT, University of Gothenburg
  • Bertil Rolandsson, PhD, Associated Professor in sociology, Dpt of Sociology and Work Science, University of Gothenburg.
  • Matilda Arvidsson, PhD, Associate Professor in law, Dpt of Law, University of Gothenburg
  • Gregor Noll, PhD, Professor of International Law, Dept of Law, University of Gothenburg
  • Ulf Petrusson, PhD, Professor of Law, Dpt of Law, Univ of Gothenburg
  • Vasilis Galis, PhD, Associate Professor, Dpt of Business IT, IT University Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Ursula Plesner, PhD, Associate Professor, Dpt of Organization, Copenhagen Business School
  • Bengt Andersen, PhD, Research Professor, Work Research Institute, Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet).

In addition to these participants, an additional postdoc will be employed.