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Technology and the promise of decentralization: Origins, development, patterns of arguments

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  • Schrape, Jan-Felix

Abstract

Digitalization has long been associated with the promise of a technology-enabled decentralization of social conditions. Although such expectations have regularly fallen short, their underlying generic vision has proven to be astonishingly stable. This paper strives to trace the origin of the notion of decentralizing socio-economic forms of coordination through technological means - from the do-it-yourself scene of the late 1960s, the computer counterculture of the 1970s and the 1980s, and the debates on cyberspace and Web 2.0 in the 1990s and 2000s to present day ideas of decentralized and distributed forms of production and economic systems. An elaboration of the basic patterns of arguments behind technology-based promises of decentralization and their communicative functions then follows.

Suggested Citation

  • Schrape, Jan-Felix, 2019. "Technology and the promise of decentralization: Origins, development, patterns of arguments," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2019-01, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:stusoi:201901
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Dolata, Ulrich & Schrape, Jan Felix, 2014. "Masses, crowds, communities, movements: Collective formations in the digital age," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2014-02, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    2. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2014. "Platform Competition in Two-Sided Markets," CPI Journal, Competition Policy International, vol. 10.
    3. Dolata, Ulrich, 2011. "Radical change as gradual transformation: Characteristics and variants of socio-technical transitions," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2011-03, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    4. Schrape, Jan-Felix, 2016. "Social media, mass media and the 'public sphere': Differentiation, complementarity and co-existence," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2016-01, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    5. Fettke, Ulrike, 2018. "Etablierte und Außenseiter in der Kommunalpolitik? Eine Fallstudie zu Windkraft in einer badenwürttembergischen Kleinstadt," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2018-03, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    6. Neukirch, Mario, 2017. "Die Dynamik des Konflikts um den Stromtrassenbau: Stabilität, Wandel oder Stagnation?," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2017-04, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    7. Schrape, Jan-Felix, 2011. "Der Wandel des Buchhandels durch Digitalisierung und Internet," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2011-01, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    8. Kropp, Cordula, 2018. "Sustainable innovations: Theories, conflicts and strategies," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2018-02, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    9. Dolata, Ulrich, 2014. "Märkte und Macht der Internetkonzerne: Konzentration - Konkurrenz - Innovationsstrategien," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2014-04, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    10. Radig, Ann-Kathrin, 2015. "Der Wandel des deutschen Videoverleihmarktes durch Digitalisierung und Internet," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2015-01, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    11. Dolata, Ulrich, 2011. "Wandel durch Technik: Eine Theorie soziotechnischer Transformation," Schriften aus dem Max-Planck-Institut für Gesellschaftsforschung Köln, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, volume 73, number 73.
    12. Dolata, Ulrich, 2017. "Social movements and the Internet: The sociotechnical constitution of collective action," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2017-02, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    13. Schrape, Jan-Felix, 2015. "Open Source Softwareprojekte zwischen Passion und Kalkül," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2015-02, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    14. Dolata, Ulrich & Schrape, Jan-Felix, 2013. "Zwischen Individuum und Organisation: Neue kollektive Akteure und Handlungskonstellationen im Internet," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2013-02, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
    15. repec:cup:jinsec:v:14:y:2018:i:04:p:639-658_00 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Werle, Raymund, 2011. "Institutional analysis of technical innovation: A review," Research Contributions to Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies, SOI Discussion Papers 2011-04, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Social Sciences, Department of Organizational Sociology and Innovation Studies.
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