Whose Infrastructure? Towards Inclusive and Collaborative Knowledge Infrastructures in Open Science
acavaminombre's bookmarks 2018-06-19
"Between 2015 and 2018, the City of Cape Town experienced one of the worst droughts in recorded history, causing government officials to initiate massive water-usage restrictions to city residents and businesses. There were massive campaigns and speculation around when Day Zero would occur—the ominous future date in which all of the city’s usable water supplies would be depleted, should the necessary rain fail to return. Plans were made for the establishment of emergency distribution points, whereby all of the city’s four-million residents would be allocated a ration of 25-litres of water per day.
The Cape Town example highlights that while infrastructures might appear as seemingly neutral entities that provide the groundwork for human activities, a deeper analysis tends to reveal highly political nuances, with significant insight regarding divisions of power and privilege within a given context. In this case, while rich and middle-class residents enjoy the invisibility of (usually) well-functioning water-delivery infrastructures, for poor communities, this gap in service delivery is an everyday feature in their lives. In short, infrastructure (in this case, publicly funded infrastructure), does not serve all users equally."