The Weizenbaum Institute launches new open access journal

In dedicating itself to the interdisciplinary digitalization research, The Weizenbaum Journal of the Digital Society (WJDS) offers a fresh, new perspective and closes a gap in the publishing business.

The new, interdisciplinary field of digitization research ­– the spectrum ranges from law to social sciences such as sociology, political science, communication science, and psychology to computer science and design research – has a new journal: The Weizenbaum Journal of the Digital Society (WJDS). Published by the Weizenbaum Institute for the Networked Society, the open access journal offers a forum for national and international scholars to publish their interdisciplinary research on the effects of digitization on society. The first issue with a total of four articles went online on November 11, 2021.

The digita­lization of society has many facets: It includes the transformation of the world of work, new forms of learning, the transformation of public space through digital media and platforms, changes in how democracies work, and chal­lenges for the legal system. In light of these developments, which often imply profound social transformations, the WJDS intends to serve as a discursive arena for discussions of how social actors can shape the digital transformation while protecting the foundations of individual and societal self-determination.

By bringing together different disciplines and representing the broadest possible spectrum of findings, the journal closes a gap that has existed to date in the international publication landscape on digitization research. "Existing journals covering related topics have a narrower disciplinary focus and, in most cases, offer open access only with a publication fee," says Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer, member of the editorial board. "Research at the intersection of several disciplines contributes to a deeper understanding of the processes of digitization and its societal consequences. That's why we want to present results of interdisciplinary projects in our journal as well as advance the programmatic discussion about interdisciplinarity."

In the first issue of the WJDS, you’ll find contributions on current and socially highly relevant debates in digitalization research that combine scientific disci­plines and methodologies in an innovative way. Eugenia Mitchelstein, Camila Giuliano, and Pablo Boczkowski combine communications research with po­litical science and a methodological mix to reveal differences in political talk across social media platforms. Eva Kocher’s article combines legal and sociological perspectives and uses organization research to further develop the regulation of labor platforms. Sandra Fredman, Darcy du Toit, Mark Graham, Aradhana Cherupara Vadekkethil, Gautam Bhatia, and Alessio Bertolini also draw on legal and social science perspectives to suggest an international framework for the regulation of platform work. In­spired by communications and social science research, Thomas Friemel, Tobias Frey, and Alexander Seifert develop a multilevel model of digital inequalities to explain internet use among older adults.

The WJDS is published several times a year in English. The articles undergo a peer-review process and are published open access under the CC BY 4.0 license. In addition to Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer, the Weizenbaum scholars Prof. Dr. Hanna Krasnova, Prof. Dr. Martin Krzywdzinski, Prof. Dr. Axel Metzger, Dr. Sonja Schimmler and Dr. Lena Ulbricht are part of the editorial board.

More information about the WJDS and the submission process is available at: https://journal.weizenbaum-institut.de

The first issue of the WJDS is available at: https://ojs.weizenbaum-institut.de/index.php/wjds/issue/view/1_1

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