Assistive technologies and autonomy in a cyborg world

Abstract

This note discusses the use of cyborg theory to study assistive technology (AT) use by people with visual impairment (VI) in development contexts. We argue that the deep intimate interconnections that people form with their AT, while allowing them to become cyborgs, also become the means by which they can be regulated and controlled. This is a concern for ICTD, which strives to consider the instrumental outcomes of technology implementation as it is interwoven throughout people’s lives. Applying Lessig’s model of regulation to a cyborg body, we discuss the implications for protecting autonomy in AT use by people with visual impairment.

Publication
Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development - ICTD ‘15