People - 01.04.2020 - 00:00 

Appointment: Paula Bialski

Prof. Dr. Paula Bialski has been Associated Professor of Digital Sociology since 1 April 2020.
Source: HSG Newsroom

1 April 2020. Prof. Dr. Paula Bialski, born on 16 April 1982, is of Polish and Canadian nationality.

After her undergraduate studies at the University of Guelph in Ontario from 2001 to 2004, she moved to the University of Warsaw to study for a Master’s degree in sociology, which she obtained in 2007. During her studies for the Master’s degree, she worked in the university’s Department of Sociology. In 2012, she was awarded a Doctor’s degree by Lancaster University for her thesis on Becoming Intimately Mobile. During her doctoral studies, she was involved in a project entitled Polish Migration to the UK: The Material Effects of Imagined Geographies in the Department of Geography of Lancaster University and worked as a lecturer in the Department of Cultural and Media Studies at the Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities. As a post-doc, she conducted research at HafenCity Universität in Hamburg and from 2013 at the Digital Cultures Research Lab of Leuphana Universität Lüneburg. In 2016, she went to the University of Konstanz as a visiting researcher. Since 2017, she has been a Junior Professor (W1) of Digital Sociality at the Institute of Culture and Aesthetics of Digital Media at Leuphana Universität Lüneburg and head of the Digital Cultures Research Lab.

Impact of digital media on working cultures and communication

Prof. Dr. Paula Bialski’s research is situated between sociology, media studies and technology research, with a special focus on the impact of digital media on working cultures, communication and the concept of intimacy. In her past research, she investigated the issues of labour and the workplace, new ad-hoc networks in smart cities, mobility and social relations, as well as intimacy. Her present research focuses on theories, methods and actions that are involved in the interaction between digital technology and society. Her current book project entitled Slow Software is based on a two-year ethnographic study which addresses the operating modes of software companies in Berlin. In addition, she is currently cooperating with international colleagues, namely Biella Coleman and Chris Kelty, to develop the online platform Hackcurio, which shows a series of brief video clips about hacking and hackers and describes these in a journalistic manner. She has a knowledge of ethnography and qualitative methods that has been tested in practice. She has already raised third-party funds in six-figure amounts, for instance as the principal investigator for the projects “Making the future. Past and present futures of Silicon Valley” of the Volkswagen Foundation and “Sociotechnical imaginaries. Past and present futures of digital cultures” of the DFG. Above and beyond this, she is involved in the organisation of conferences and is a member of the European Association for the Study of Science and Technology.

Well-founded teaching experience and new forms of learning

Prof. Dr. Paula Bialski has well-founded teaching experience and has taught courses on topics such as Infrastructure Studies, Computing History, Sharing Cultures, Online Anonymity, Data Materiality, Software Economies, Digital Music Studies, and Research Methods for Studying Digital Media. In the last five years, she was also the driving force behind the new undergraduate programme in Digital Media at Leuphana Universität Lüneburg. She taught at the University of St.Gallen before in the context of the Haniel Seminars. In the future, she would like to apply new forms of learning, such as Ethnographic Experimentation Classes or providing students with the freedom to choose their own learning contents.