New research shows that data centers are not the jackpot that local politicians and energy companies claim they are: They don’t create many jobs, they are a burden to the environment and the electricity networks, and they provide little benefit to local communities. So why all the hype when there’s a new data center coming to town?
In this Medea Vox episode, media researcher Julia Velkova shares her research on data centers. She has engaged in fieldwork in several Nordic countries where she has studied the operations of data centers such as the Russian platform Yandex.
Julia Velkova is a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre for Consumer Society Research, University of Helsinki, Finland. She is interviewed by Pille Pruulmann-Vengerfeldt, professor in Media and Communication Studies at Malmö University.
Read also these articles by Julia Velkova:
- Data that warms: Waste heat, infrastructural convergence and the computation traffic commodity, published in the Sage journal Big Data & Society
- Data Centers as Impermanent Infrastructures, published in Culture Machine, an open-access journal of culture and theory
- Podcast: People, Imagination and Concrete, published by University of Calgary’s Environmental Media Lab
This Medea Vox episode is a co-production with Malmö University’s research program Data Society, which focuses on the social and cultural issues arising from data-centric technological development.