Thursday, January 11, 2007

The automatic management of drivers and driving spaces

Our paper is officially published in Geoforum in March 2007. (A local copy is available here.)


In this paper, we examine the development and implementation of new technical systems designed to more effectively manage and produce driving, drivers and driving spaces. These new systems change the governmentality of automobilities by altering the relationship between driver, vehicle and transport infrastructure and produce new subjects and spaces. They do this principally through the process of automation, creating a system of regulation that we term ‘automated management’. Automated management consists of two interlocking sets of regulatory technologies: automated surveillance that seeks to enforce more effective (self)disciplining and capture systems that actively reshape activity. We argue that these work together to alter the automobilities landscape creating new sociospatial arrangements with respect to access, movement, flow, and behaviour. Some of these arrangements are benign and empowering to individuals, others enhance the power of state and corporations. We illustrate our argument with examples predominately drawn from the UK, though the technologies we discuss are increasingly being developed and implemented throughout Western countries
and beyond.

© 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Keywords: Automobile; Software; Surveillance; Space; Transport


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