Special Issue "Rethinking Filter: Responsibility and Sustainability"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2020).
Interests: active matter; material science and engineering; filter phenomena; science-design research and education; Materials Sustainability; Interdisciplinary processes and collaborations
Interests: responsible research and innovation (RRI); stakeholder engagement; industry and innovation; RRI in industry; RRI KPIs; RRI metrics; RRI assessment; responsible innovation monitoring
In this Special Issue of Sustainability we would like to open up an interdisciplinary conversation about responsible filtering.
At the base of all everyday products, services and information we produce and consume are filtering operations: From the processing of food to waste recycling to insurance policies and search engine feeds. Most knowledge we deal with on a daily basis is the product of filtering operations and filter algorithms that we do not necessarily always understand. Hence, filtering is of concern in various disciplines and fields: Whether it be synthetic biology or cyber security, nano-molecular machines or deep learning of AI, drug delivery or politics of immigration, the petrochemical industry or speculation in finance.
Generally, filtering can be described as a separating operation that is producing and processing differences. A common example would be the membrane that differentiates between inside and outside or selects particles out of a medium. We argue that it is more productive to understand filters not in terms of mere objects but as processes or operative systems that need to be understood ecologically, which entails to consider different elements as interacting agents. This systemic nature of the filter needs to be acknowledged regardless of disciplinary specifications.
Furthermore, filtering as a separating operation—being a selection, classification or reduction—by definition implies an aspect of discrimination. Whether you are dealing with personal filter bubbles as a consequence of automated algorithms or with a chemical purification process, there is always some sort of bias or intrinsic agenda involved in these filter operations. These politics inherent to filtering operations manifest themselves in many of today’s challenges from personalized news feed to gender-insensitive pharmaceutical research or to intransparent credit allocations, for instance.
The contemporary discourse of responsible research and innovation states that scientific innovations have social, ethical, legal, economic or political implications. Every scientific research or engineering innovation, therefore, needs to be self-reflective and anticipating its effects on society and the environment. Similarly, research dealing with filter systems would then need to proceed with a high degree of conscious reflection and cautious anticipation. On the one hand, one needs to be aware of the systemic nature of filtering processes with all its operative actors to anticipate the consequences of their interrelations. On the other hand, the discriminatory functioning of the filter needs to be addressed and investigated. One challenge, we argue, is to take these mechanisms inherent to the filtering phenomena and rethink them in terms of responsibility and sustainability.
In this Special Issue we would like to bring together a wide range of research projects that deal with filter systems, filter materials, or filter operations from diverse disciplines. We ask authors to present relevant filter projects and discuss them in regard to matters of “Sustainability and Responsible Research and Innovation”.
A non-exhaustive list of suggested topics concerned with filters, filtering processes and filter systems:
- ICT: Data Science; Machine Learning and AI; Robotics; Cryptography and Cyber Security; Content Production, Suggestion and Moderation; Automation and Human Agency; etc.
- Biology and Medicine: Bio-Membranes; Biological Sensors; Organ Systems (Circulatory, Digestive, Respiratory, Nervous etc.); Synthetic Biology; Gene Technology; Nanobiotechnology; Drug Delivery; Pharmaceutical industry and Insurance; etc,
- Natural or Synthetic Sensors; Chemical; Mechanical; Thermal; Electrical and Magnetic; etc,
- Climate and Energy: Pollution (Air, Water, Noise, etc.); Waste Management and Recycling; Oil, Mining and Chemical Industries; Renewable Energy; etc.
- Politics: Representation; National, International and Cyber Security; Politics of Border; Human, Finance and Trade Mobility; Policy Making; etc
Dr. Khashayar Razghandi
Dr. Emad Yaghmaei
Manuscript Submission Information
Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.
Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.
Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.
- Responsible Research and Innovation