Dr. Natasha Tusikov is the principal investigator of a SSHRC Insight Development Grant (2019-2021) entitled “Governing Knowledge and Data in Smart Cities,” in cooperation with Dr. Blayne Haggart and Dr. Nicole Goodman (Brock University), and Dr. Zachary Spicer (University of Western Ontario). This project investigates the central role that the control of data plays in smart cities. The project examines the interaction between state and non-state actors in regulating the creation and use of information within the knowledge-based economy. The project will assess the choices, practices, and norms that shape data collection, analysis, and use, the devices that capture data, and the relationships among government, private sector, and civil society in these processes. Drawing on the smart city plan designed for Toronto’s Quayside neighbourhood and proposed by Sidewalk Labs, a subsidy of Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc. as a case study, the project will answer the following questions:
- How do the various actors understand the role of knowledge in the production, use and control over data?
- Who establishes the rules governing the collection, use and ownership of data?
- How does the collection and control of data affect public policy and government regulatory activities?
- What are the implications of the rules governing data on access to information, democratic decision making, and for social inclusion in the community?
Dr. Tusikov’s research examines the intersection among law, crime, technology, and regulation, and she is the author of Chokepoints: Global Private Regulation on the Internet (University of California Press, 2017). Her study on Internet firms’ sharing of personal information and the implications for Canadians’ privacy received funding from the Contributions Program at the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (2016-2017). She is also a co-investigator on the SSHRC Insight Development Grant “Internet Governance, Intellectual Property and the Exercise of Power in the 21st Century” (2016-2018). Before obtaining her PhD at the Australian National University, she was a strategic criminal intelligence analyst and researcher at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Ottawa.