New Geographies 7: 'Geographies of Information'
Ali Fard & Taraneh Meshkani editors, New Geographies 7: 'Geographies of Information' (Harvard University Press, 2015).
Digital information and data flows permeate every aspect of our society. Within this context, design extensively avails itself of the technological bounty of advanced digital tools. Yet beyond these tools, the fluidity of digital information and the seemingly immaterial nature of communication dominate most discussions. Most readings of ICTs (information and communications technologies) have been unable to fully articulate their spatial implications and have instead focused on the general binary conditions of their materiality (physical or virtual), manifestation (hardware or software systems), scales of operation (global or local), or relational characteristics (social or technological).
Understanding the contemporary networks of information and communication as inherently geographic, Geographies of Information attempts to realign design’s relationship to ICTs by expounding on their multiscalar complexities and contextual intricacies. This volume presents a new set of frameworks that refrain from generalizations to highlight the many facets of the socio-technical constructions, processes, and practices that form the spaces of information and communication. From the impact of digital social media on political action and the rise of predictive technologies in speculative real estate to new ways of mapping temporal conditions of a site and the evolving role of information in how designers see, understand, and act on space, ICTs exert critical influence. This issue of New Geographies examines the forms, imprints, places, and territories of ICTs through spatially grounded and nuanced accounts of the hybrid conditions that ICTs generate, the scales at which they operate, and how this production of space is manifested in both advanced and emerging economies.
NG07 includes contributions from Jean-François Blanchette, Caitlin Blanchfield, Benjamin Bratton, Peter Del Tredici, Erle Ellis, Mark Graham, Stephen Graham, Adam Greenfield, Shuli Hallak, Rob Kitchin, Evangelos Kotsioris, Jennifer Light, Merlyna Lim, Eleonora Marinou, Malcolm McCullough, Yannis Orfanos, Dimitris Papanikolaou, Antoine Picon, Michalis Pirokka, Spiro Pollalis, Vicky Sagia, Mark Shepard, Molly Steenson, Kazys Varnelis, Mason White, and Matthew Wilson.
This volume emerged from ongoing collaborations with our friends and colleagues in the New Geographies Lab at the Harvard GSD.