Where privacy meets power: questions of data & racial inequality

5th June 2022

Data are often understood as self-evident reflections of the world, even though there is growing evidence of how data-driven practices can have racially discriminatory outcomes. Although these inequitable outcomes may be unintended, they can nonetheless erode trust, particularly among effected communities.

On Privacy Week 9-14 May 2022, RegNet’s Director Professor Kate Henne chaired a virtual event on privacy and power. The session brought together experts from different fields to discuss concerns of privacy and power as they arise at the intersections of data and racial inequality. It showcased research conducted on practices related to climate finance, criminal justice, gender violence responses and humanitarianism in Australasia, the Middle East, North America and the Pacific. Structured as a discussion, the panel offered a starting point for challenging how data can replicate and reinforce racial inequality.

Watch the recorded seminar here.


Kirsty Anantharajah is a PhD candidate in Regulation and Governance at the Australian National University (ANU), where she is a member of the ANU Justice and Technoscience Lab. Her research explores questions of agency and justice surrounding the deployment of energy technologies in the Global South. Her current work examines experiences of climate finance governance in the Pacific.

Jenna Imad HarbYour text to link here… is a PhD candidate and member of the Justice and Technoscience Lab in the ANU School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet). She has published on issues of anti-sexual violence technologies, data protection and the regulation of welfare. Her dissertation examines the role of technology in social assistance and humanitarian systems in Lebanon.

Professor Kate Henne is the Director of RegNet, where she leads the ANU Justice and Technoscience Lab. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Arizona State University and University of Waterloo. Her research is concerned with the increased use of technology to regulate different groups of people, focusing on areas that span health, policing, sport and welfare.

Dr Kanika Samuels-Wortley is an Assistant Professor of Criminology at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, and a Visiting Fellow at RegNet. Her research explores the intersection of systemic racism, technology, and the criminal justice system. Her current work examines concerns around racial bias in the use of predictive policing technologies.

Dr Renee Shelby is a Visiting Fellow at RegNet and is a member of the ANU Justice and Technoscience Lab. Her research examines the intersections of technology’s impact on racial and gender inequality, organisations, and gender violence, with a focus on how to address inequality and minimise sociotechnical harms.

Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet