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Stephane Couture, Sophie Toupin

What does the notion of “sovereignty” mean when referring to the digital?

2020. Vol. 15. No. 4. P. 48–69 [issue contents]
This article analyzes how the notion of “sovereignty” has been and is still mobilized in the realm of the digital. This notion is increasingly used to describe various forms of independence, control, and autonomy over digital infrastructures, technologies, and data. Our analysis originates from our previous and current research with activist “tech collectives” where we observed a use of the notion to emphasize alternative technological practices in a way that significantly differs from a governmental policy perspective. In this article, we review several publications in order to show the difference, if not diverging ways in which the notion is being conceptualized, in particular by different groups. We show that while the notion is generally used to assert some form of collective control on digital content and/or infrastructures, the precise interpretations, subjects, meanings, and definitions of sovereignty can significantly differ.
Citation: Couture S., Toupin S. (2020) What Does the Notion of “Sovereignty” Mean When Referring to theDigital? International Organisations Research Journal, vol. 15, no 4, pp. 48–69 (in Russian).
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