Humanities Tech KTH: AI for Survival

January 30, 2019
KTH Royal Institute of Technology

Open to anyone. Registration required. Please register here. Venue (on the KTH main campus) will be announced to registered participants and on the website shortly.

Humanities Tech KTH events explore the intersection of the humanities, human and technology with a particular focus on critical and constructive engagement with socio-technological systems. More Humanities Tech KTH events here.


In setting the stage for this Humanities Tech KTH event, Nishant Shah will provide a critique of AI as well as discussing what AI (and we/our world) could be. 

The title of Shah’s talk: “AI for Survival, or How feminist, person-of-colour critique will save the world”. 

The talk will be followed by an extended conversation. More invited participants may be added to the event.

You are welcome to indicate your interests in the topic/area in the registration – will feed into the planning of the event.

Abstract for Nishant Shah’s talk

One of the most visible emphasis in the social acceleration of Artificial Intelligence is what I call an “extinction impulse”.

This manifests itself in multiple ways – in how we design-think problems, how we conceptualise our users, how we buy into the promise of A.I. and how we imagine that the answer to our A.I. concerns is going to be more A.I. 

Following the logic of digital capital and Silicon Valley fueled visions, current digital development in general, and with A.I. in particular, perpetuate myths which we have taken as natural. 

In this talk, I hope to show how a feminist and person-of-colour critique of these myths, and the alternatives they provide might offer us a more hopeful, inclusive and a humane way of building worlds that are made for survival.


Nishant Shah is the Dean of the Graduate School at the ArtEZ University of the Arts, Visiting Professor at the Centre for Digital Cultures, Leuphana University, and the co-founder of the Centre for Internet & Society, Bangalore. Shah’s work is at the intersections of technology, affect, identity, and social and political movements. He currently is preoccupied with questions of digital simulations and our capacity to tell truth in the face of discriminating data.