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Message posted on 29/09/2022

Invitation: MULTIMODAL FUTURES(?) Roundtable

Dear all,

it is with great pleasure that we share the invitation to the roundtable “Multimodal Futures (?)” – an STS-MIGTEC initiative made possible by the financial support of EASST Fund and hosted by ReCNTR at Leiden University. Please see the full information in the flyer attached.

MULTIMODAL FUTURES(?) Roundtable with the participants of the International Multimodal Workshop “Researching and publishing strategies for multimodal interventions in the field of migration, borders and security technologies”

6 OCT 2022 | 15.30 - 17:00 CET

Hybrid format: University of Leiden, Wassenaarseweg 52, 2333 AK Leiden, Room 5A37 & online

Registration required: to attend please RSVP by October 4! contact: with the subject ‘multi-modal futures’


by LAURA FORLANO Laura will share an example of a robotic sculpture that uses data from her insulin pump that she has been collaborating on with a multimedia artist Laura Forlano is a Fulbright award-winning writer, social scientist and design researcher. She is an Associate Professor of Design at the Institute of Design at Illinois Institute of Technology. She is an editor of three books: Bauhaus Futures (MIT Press 2019), digitalSTS (Princeton University Press 2019) and From Social Butterfly to Engaged Citizen (MIT Press 2011).

by PEDRO F NETO Based on the co-authored documentary feature-film YOON (2021), Pedro will think on how the film and its related unused materials inspired an installation and further reflections on borders, waste, and migration. Pedro is an anthropologist and award-winning filmmaker, research fellow at the Instituto de Ciências Sociais da Universidade de Lisboa (ICS-ULisboa). He has conducted extensive research in Southern Africa (Angola, Zambia and Mozambique) and West Africa (Senegal and Guinea-Bissau) on topics such as forced displacement, migration, mobility, borders, refugee camps, development and violence. Recent audiovisual work includes: Guadiana in Four Movements (2022); YOON (2021); Abyssal (2021); Withering Refuge (2020). More at

by NINA AMELUNG Nina will briefly portray selected examples of multi-modal interventions shared during the workshop by other workshop participants to showcase the ambitions and challenges of multi-modality in the context of matters of migration, border and technology. Nina Amelung is a sociologist, research fellow at the Instituto de Ciências Sociais da Universidade de Lisboa (ICS-ULisboa), researching at the intersection of science and technology studies and critical migration/border/security studies. She is co-founder of the independent international research network Her work is driven by the curiosity to learn, experiment and critically reflect about new forms of collaborative engagements with different publics.

Followed by discussions with the participants of the International Multimodal Workshop.

Nina Amelung, Laura Forlano, Irene Gutierrez Torres, Amade M’charek, Fredy Mora Gámez, Andrew Gilbert, Pedro Neto, Ildikó Plájás, Francesco Ragazzi, Rune Saugmann & Ariel Caine, Mark Westmoreland, Jonathan Austin, Shirley van der Maarel, Ruben van de Ven & Cyan Bae.

After a one and a half day workshop the final roundtable comes back to the initial question: “How do multiple forms of engagements with border and migration control regimes imagine and make a difference on the matters they critically engage with?”. With multimodal interventions, we refer to research engaging with creative audio-visual utterances, which span across the broader spectrum of media genres and formats including e.g. installations, documentary, film, podcasts, soundscapes, memes, graphic novels, mapping exercises, creative storytelling. Multimodal interventions may have the potential to make a difference in practice, including in the living conditions of migrants, as well as conceptual reflections on such collaborative initiatives. We reflect on a diversity of approaches with regards to the purposes and ambitions of interventions, but also with regards to their methodologies and formats. The roundtable will be kicked off with a couple of inspiring examples to help us envision the many possible and desirable multimodal futures that can inspire how we engage with matters of migration, borders & technology.

With best wishes, also on behalf of Nina Amelung and Pedro Neto, Ildikó

-- Ildikó Z. Plájás, Postdoctoral researcher / Security Vision / / Leiden University Lecturer Visual Anthropology / University of Amsterdam / 0031 6 84937553

See also: Plájás, I. Z., Ragazzi, F. & van de Ven, R. (2022). From Consensus to Diffraction: On Generative Frictions in Mapping Computer Vision Technologies in the Field of Security. Anthrovision [Online], Vol. 8.1 | 2020. Plájás I. Z. (2021). Permanent Temporality: Race, Time, and the Materiality of Romanian Identity Cards. Science, Technology, & Human Values. 0(0), 1-23.

[demime 1.01d removed an attachment of type application/pdf which had a name of flyer roundtable.pdf]

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