Infrastructure, platform, locality: A response to Motta and Georgiou (IAMCR slides)

by Scott Rodgers on July 14, 2017

Tomorrow I depart London for my first ever visit to South America; specifically, to Cartagena, Colombia, for the 2017 IAMCR conference. I have the honour of being the respondent to Wallis Motta and Myria Georgiou’s ‘Deep mapping communication infrastructure in super diverse London’ which has won the 2016 IAMCR Urban Communication Grant. The paper is an highly interesting attempt to join a participatory deep mapping methodology with Communication Infrastructure Theory in order to think about the mediation of difference in London’s Harringay/Green Lanes neighbourhood.

I have structured my response around three broad themes: infrastructure, platform and locality. My discussion of media infrastructure will centre on what might be meant by communication infrastructure, and will briefly discuss approaches that emphasise the phenomenological experience of media. On the subject of platform, I will compare and contrast some collaborative research I have been conducting, on social media and neighbourhood politics, with Motta and Georgiou’s study which focuses more so on hyperlocal media outlets. Finally, I sympathetically assess the notions of ‘locality’ at work Communication Infrastructure Theory, in part via a discussion of my own recent research on UK charity Nesta’s Destination Local programme.

I have included the slides below. If you happen to be in Cartagena for IAMCR, please do come to the session! It takes place on Monday 17 July, 4-6pm at Teatro Adolfo Mejía (Centro, Plaza de la Merced 38-101, Cartagena, Colombia). It’s a wonderful building – and it’ll definitely be the most dramatic I’ve ever presented in – as shown in the photos on this website.

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