The Infrastructures of the Global Data Economy: Undersea Cables and International Law

61 Harvard International Law Journal Frontiers, 2020

9 Pages Posted: 20 May 2020

See all articles by Roxana Vatanparast

Roxana Vatanparast

Harvard Kennedy School; University of Turin

Date Written: April 2020

Abstract

This short article foregrounds the material infrastructure underlying the global data economy to highlight its entanglement with technological, legal, and social orders. It traces how cables helped shape political thought in the nineteenth century and were in turn shaped by imperial dynamics. Then it discusses the material turn in international law and how it provides ways for reimagining international law’s effects on everyday life. Finally, it discusses how cables have become sites where power and contestation play out, the relationship of international law to undersea cables, and how they have mutually shaped each other. It ends with some thoughts on denaturalizing the relationship between undersea cables, international law, and the global data economy.

Keywords: International Law, Undersea Cables, Global Data Economy, Science and Technology Studies, Materiality

Suggested Citation

Vatanparast, Roxana, The Infrastructures of the Global Data Economy: Undersea Cables and International Law (April 2020). 61 Harvard International Law Journal Frontiers, 2020, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3583708

Roxana Vatanparast (Contact Author)

Harvard Kennedy School ( email )

Program on Science, Technology and Society
79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

University of Turin ( email )

Via Po 53
Torino, Turin - Piedmont 10100
Italy

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
400
Abstract Views
1,540
rank
102,987
PlumX Metrics