Co-creating a Transdisciplinary Map of Technology-mediated Harms, Risks and Vulnerabilities: Challenges, Ambivalences and Opportunities

Andrés Domínguez Hernández, Kopo Ramokapane, Partha Das Chowdhury, Ola Michalec, Emily Johnstone, Emily Godwin, Alicia Cork, Awais Rashid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (SciVal)


The phrase "online harms'' has emerged in recent years out of a growing political willingness to address the ethical and social issues associated with the use of the Internet and digital technology at large. The broad landscape that surrounds online harms gathers a multitude of disciplinary, sectoral and organizational efforts while raising myriad challenges and opportunities for the crossing entrenched boundaries. In this paper we draw lessons from a journey of co-creating a transdisciplinary knowledge infrastructure within a large research initiative animated by the online harms agenda. We begin with a reflection of the implications of mapping, taxonomizing and constructing knowledge infrastructures and a brief review of how online harm and adjacent themes have been theorized and classified in the literature to date. Grounded on our own experience of co-creating a map of online harms, we then argue that the map---and the process of mapping---perform three mutually constitutive functions, acting simultaneously as method, medium and provocation. We draw lessons from how an open-ended approach to mapping, despite not guaranteeing consensus, can foster productive debate and collaboration in ethically and politically fraught areas of research. We end with a call for CSCW research to surface and engage with the multiple temporalities, social lives and political sensibilities of knowledge infrastructures.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3610179
Pages (from-to)1-21
Number of pages21
JournalProceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction
Issue numberCSCW2
Early online date4 Oct 2023
Publication statusPublished - 4 Oct 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by REPHRAIN: The National Research Centre on Privacy, Harm Reduction and Adversarial Influence Online, under UKRI grant: EP/V011189/1.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Owner/Author.


  • co-creation
  • interdisciplinary research
  • knowledge infrastructure
  • online harms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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