This article traces the travel of biometric data of Syrian refugees in Jordan through a hastily evolving political economy characterized by a pervasive craving for the extraction, storage and brokering of displacement data. It analyzes iris-enrollment as problematic acts of quasi-citizenship for the displaced requiring the performance of social and economic docility in order to attain identity, cash and service provision. Quasi-objects in the form of digital footprints are fashioned through infrastructures that simultaneously seek to model, yet fail to capture, socioeconomic existence in displacement contexts. Discourses of anti-fraud, donor dictates, upward accountability and strategies of financial inclusion of ‘the unbanked’, facilitate the marketization of the creation of data-doubles in laboratories of displacement and loopholes for externalization. Driven by increasingly blurred lines between technological, humanitarian and financial interests, this development has transformative effects on both those displaced, and on a humanitarian sector tasked with safeguarding their rights.
. (2020) Extract, Datafy and Disrupt: Refugees’ Subjectivities between Data Abundance and Data Disregard. Geopolitics 0:0, pages 1-19.
Author(s): Lemberg-Pedersen, Martin and Eman Haioty
Publisher or Journal: Citizenship Studies 24,2020, 607-624
Year of Publication: 2020
Document Type: Article