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Selected Publications

WillInformationTechnology Reshape theNorth-South Asymmetry ofPower in theGlobal Political Economy?

Bussell, Jennifer and Steven Weber. Will Information Technology Reshape the North-South Asymmetry of Power in the Global Political Economy? in Studies in Comparative International Development, Vol. 40, No. 2, 2005.


Digital technologies are sufficiently disruptive to current ways of doing things to call into question assumptions about the “inevitability” or “natural state” of many economic processes and organizational principles. In particular, the impact of digital technologies on our conceptions of property rights has potentially dramatic implications for the North-South divide and the distribution of power in the global political economy. Drawing on recent experiences with open-source property rights regimes, we present two scenarios, the “imperialism of property rights” and the “shared global digital infrastructure,” to highlight how debates over property-rights could influence the development of the global digital infrastructure and, in turn, contribute to significantly different outcomes in global economic power.

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