Übergordnete Werke und Veranstaltungen

#critical infrastructures

By land sea and air: infrastructures in the age of platform capitalism

DE 2021

Most relevant infrastructures become visible only when they fail. In the last year, some became very visible. "Critical infrastructure" was among the buzzwords of the Corona pandemic, evoking the fragility of social cohesion and depencies. We had a functional Covid test in two days but couldn't use it without swabs, and swabs, like most things, are made in China. Our electronics come from Shenzhen, our chips depend almost entirely on Taiwan's foundries. Our ability to trace COVID positive contacts safely with smartphone apps depend on Google and Apple. We can design vaccines in record time but cannot distribute them, and a massive 200.000-tonne ship can cost 12% of global trade when stuck in a canal. These spotlights adorne some of the “postcards” from our world-wide infrastructure travel by land, sea and air.

In the session on #critical infrastructures, Marta Peirano, Spanish thinker, advocate for free software, digital privacy and the radical decentralization of critical infrastructure will be in conversation with Sarah Grant to discuss the notion of global infrastructures, both in relation to sudden visibilities due to the pandemic as well as other moments in which we become aware of their entanglements and dependencies — and how failing to see them is crucial for their existence and functionality.

Conversation with Marta Peirano (ES) and Sarah Grant (US)

Mitschnitt (EN)