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Activist Approaches to Techno-Capitalism

Type: Panel
Sponsor Groups: Digital Geographies Specialty Group
Organizers: Casey Lynch, Erin McElroy


Within the broader “digital turn” (Ash, Kitchin, and Leszczynski, 2018) in geography over the past several years, scholars have paid increased attention to the evolving power of techno-capitalist firms and their intrusion into new areas of social life. Tech firms have increasingly taken over an array of markets and domains of life, including: housing, transportation, policing, disaster management, health care, militarism, urban planning, agriculture, and government, to name a few. Tech facilitates the “disruption” of these areas through “digital innovation.” Meanwhile the growth of the broader tech industry in cities around the world has created and/or intensified localized processes of gentrification. At the same time, its materiality contributes to ecological disaster, while its products facilitate the increased targeting and dispossession of people of color. This panel aims to bring together scholars engaged in activist approaches to challenging the evolving techno-capitalist hegemony in different sectors and from across geographic contexts. Our panel discussion will focus on activist conceptions of technology, the diversity of strategies employed by movements, and on broader forms of solidarity and cooperation across struggles. We will also discuss what solidarity across locales might look like, and how to better bring together activists engaged in fighting for just technological futures across various fields.


Type Details Minutes
Panelist Emma Slager University of Washington - Tacoma 15
Discussant Desiree Fields University of California, Berkeley 15
Discussant Ayona Datta University College London 15
Panelist Katja Schwaller Stanford University 15
Panelist Elizabeth Geglia American University 15

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