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[Commlist] CfP RGS-IBG 2020: Borders, bordering and sovereignty in cyberspace

Fri Jan 17 13:37:48 GMT 2020

Borders, bordering and sovereignty in cyberspace

*Call for Papers for RGS-IBG Annual Conference, London, 1-4 September 2020*

Sponsored by: Digital Geography Research Group (DGRG)

Session organisers: Dr Chenchen Zhang (QUB) and Carwyn Morris (London School of Economics)

National borders continue to operate in the digital space despite predictions otherwise. Scholars have argued that the global communication space and the nation state are both oppositional and co-constituting forces in internet governance. Cyberborders are produced through, for instance, regulatory systems, jurisdictional assertions, censorship regimes, and discourses of cyber sovereignty and cyber security. While governments draw on concepts of sovereignty and national security to assert control over a virtual space that seems essentially borderless, civil society actors have also sought to put forward ideas of digital sovereignty along the lines of freedom and self-determination. This session aims to address theoretical and empirical questions regarding processes of (de)bordering and (de)territorialization in cyberspace. How are the concepts of sovereignty, territory, and borders reproduced and transformed in the context of the digital? What are the emerging patterns of power and c ontestation with regard to the control over data and information flows? We especially welcome contributions that engage with critical perspectives on the concepts of sovereignty, territory, and borders such as those focused on performance, discourse/practice, and governmentality.

Papers might explore the following themes:

* The production of digital territories and borders through legal, technological, and other means

  *   Firewalls, censorship regimes, internet disruptions

  *   The territorialization of services, infrastructure and populations

  *   Concepts and discourses of cyber, digital, and data sovereignty

  *   The geopolitics of data and internet control

  *   Cyberborders and data protection law

* How borders and practices of territorialization in cyberspace are contested

  *   The impact of territorialization and bordering on populations

  *   Conceptual and theoretical contributions

  *   Contributions beyond methodological nationalism

We encourage panellists to present in a creative method, not limited to a formal paper presentation. The session will consist of 4-5 papers, a strictly enforced 15 mins each to enable time for question and answers. Guidelines will be provided for accepted panellists. Whilst we would love to see you in London, we support Skype presentations and pre-recorded video presentations, as long as the presenter can engage in the Q&A.

Please email prospective abstracts (max 250 words) or any queries to Chenchen ((Chenchen.Zhang /at/ and Carwyn ((c.j.morris /at/ by Friday February 7th, 2020.

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