[T]his special issue situates the experience of whistleblowing in the context of contemporary discourses and practices, such as security, transparency and accountability, and is thereby particularly interested in the exploration of the ethical and political dimensions and implications of practices of whistleblowing. It raises the question of who is considered to be qualified to blow the whistle, under which conditions, about what, in what forms, with what consequences, and with what relation to power (Foucault, 2001). How is the figure of the whistleblower socially and discursively constructed and is there, for example, a specific relation to gender, race and class implied? How and at what cost do whistleblowers as political actors constitute themselves as ethical subjects, capable of taking risks and posing a challenge, capable of governing themselves and of governing others? Moreover, why are we suddenly faced with a boom of whistleblowing and an intensified ‘problematisation’ of the phenomenon in so-called digital cultures? Or, from another perspective, for which social, political, legal and also technical difficulties is whistleblowing the answer?
Deadline for submissions is March 31, 2018. All contributions should be submitted to one of the issue editors: Randi Heinrichs (randi.heinrichs AT leuphana.de), Bernadette Loacker (b.loacker AT lancaster.ac.uk), Richard Weiskopf (richard.weiskopf AT uibk.ac.at). Please note that three categories of contributions are invited for the special issue: articles, notes, and reviews. Information about these types of contributions can be found at: http://www.ephemerajournal.org/how-submit. The submissions will undergo a double-blind review process. All submissions should follow ephemera’s submission guidelines (see the ‘Abc of formatting’ guide in particular). For further information, please contact me or one of the other special issue editors.
In the wake of new digital technologies, organizations rely increasingly on contributions by external actors to innovate or even to fulfill their core tasks, including strategy-making processes. These external actors may take the form of crowds, where actors are isolated and dispersed, or of communities, where these actors are related and self-identify as members of their communities. While we know that including new actors in strategy-making may lead to tensions, we know little about how these tensions differ when either crowds or communities are concerned. Investigating this question by analyzing open strategy-making initiatives conducted by two non-profit organizations (Creative Commons and Wikimedia), we find that tensions with communities may be resolved with increasing openness in strategy-making, while crowds are better compatible with more exclusive strategy-making practices.
The full text of the article is available at the journal’s website. As usual, please send me an e-mail in case you are interested but your institution does not provide access to the journal.
In this article, we examine how non-membership organizations that claim stewardship over a transnational public or common good, such as the environmental or digital commons, develop combinations of formal and informal recursivity to develop and maintain regulatory conversations with their dispersed user communities. Based on a case study of Creative Commons, an organization that developed what have become the most widely used open licenses for digital content, we show how rhetorical openness to informal feedback from legitimacy communities in different sectors and countries can improve the feasibility and diffusion of standards. However, as long as the standard-setter’s methods of making decisions on the basis of such feedback remains opaque, its communities are likely to raise accountability demands for more extensive ex post justifications.