Member Profile

Ziya Kaya

PhD candidate, School of Anthropology, University of Arizona

Contributing Editor, Platypus, The CASTAC Blog

Research Interests

Agriculture | Biotech | Critical Algorithms Studies | Critical Data Studies | Digital Anthropology | Economization | Environmental anthropology | Finance | Infrastructure | Middle East | Multispecies Ethnography | Political ecology | Science & Technology Studies |

About Ziya

I am a Ph.D. candidate in sociocultural anthropology with a minor in geography at the University of Arizona. Currently, I am conducting my doctoral dissertation research on digital, biotechnological, and financial interventions in Turkey's agroecologies.



Contributions to Platypus, The CASTAC Blog

View all of Ziya's posts on Platypus, The CASTAC Blog.

Algorithmic Imaginations in Agriculture: Automation?

In 2022, I was conducting my doctoral dissertation research on data-driven, automated digital farming technologies (drones, autosteering, sensors, GIS, smartphones, Big Data) in Turkey. Amidst the global hype for digital agriculture, often referred to as “smart” farming or precision agriculture, new agritech companies and startups in and beyond Turkey have been emerging alongside agribusiness corporations. These companies invest in and prioritize data-driven and algorithmic technologies over human involvement in agriculture with the assumption of the former’s objectivity and precision (Bronson 2022). For instance, the market in Turkey provides farmers with access to drones for precise chemical spraying, including fertilizers and pesticides. These drones operate autonomously, enabling farmers to target specific sub-fields rather than resorting to mass spraying. Farmers can also access various smartphone applications that, for instance, claim to offer real-time data on soil conditions at the sub-field level collected through sensors and algorithmic recommendations ensuring precise irrigation. Additionally, the (read more...)