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From Space Internet to Cloud Computing: the future of big tech is in infrastructure

With Dr Corinne Cath, Nicole (Yung) Au, Dr Ashwin Mathew, and Dr Luc Rocher
13 Mar 2024
With Dr Corinne Cath, Nicole (Yung) Au, Dr Ashwin Mathew, and Dr Luc Rocher

The future of the tech industry is in infrastructure not data. This means that those who control the infrastructure of Internet—and other key infrastructural technologies like cloud computing and chips—control the bounds of public speech, economic production, social cohesion, and politics, making infrastructure a core political terrain in the networked age. This afternoon we bring together three expert panelists to discuss this topic through their contributions to a recently published book, called Eaten by the Internet. Yung Au (current OII Dphil), Dr Corinne Cath (OII DPhil alumni), and Dr Ashwin Mathew (KCL) will take on thorny topics from Amazon’s dreams of a space Internet to the political economy of the cloud. The discussion with the book’s authors and editor, led by Dr Luc Rocher, will make Internet infrastructure visible as a key force of political power and urge us to ask how can we ensure the tech’s infrastructure will sustain us, rather than consume us?


Corinne Cath

Dr Corinne Cath

Postdoc, Technische Universiteit Delft

Corinne is an anthropologist who studies the politics of internet infrastructure. Previously, Corinne was VP of Research at the Open Tech Fund. She finished her PhD at the OII in 2021.

Ashwin Mathew

Dr Ashwin Mathew

Lecturer in Global Digital Cultures, Kings College London

Ashwin is an ethnographer of Internet infrastructure, studying the technologies and technical communities involved in the operation of the global Internet.