Since November 2013, I am a PhD student in Organization Studies at Freie Universität Berlin. Earlier that year, I graduated with distinction from the M.Sc. Management and Information Technology at the University of St. Andrews. In 2011, I completed the B.A. Media Management at Hochschule Fresenius in Cologne. Since 2010, my studies are supported by a scholarship grant of the Foundation of German Business (Stiftung der Deutschen Wirtschaft).
I set up this blog in order to document the process of my PhD research and to capture some thoughts that cross my mind during these years. As any (proper) social science research would command, the scope and aims of my project have changed over time. At this very moment (in March 2015) where I (re-)write these words, I think of it this way: We face an ongoing, and steadily accelerating, dataization of the cities we live in. This so-called dataization touches every aspect of life, starting from personal communication to gathering information about our environment, and even to policy decisions that affect the lives of us all. The more data does flow through our cities, the more important it becomes to look at the distribution of data access and use, as I have come to conclude. More data in total does not necessarily mean more data for everyone.
In my PhD project, I therefore take a close look at the case of local Open Government Data initiatives. How did the issue come up? How do actors try to renegotiate their access to certain types of data? How do other actors react and potentially try to maintain the given state of data distribution? I will aim to yield a picture of the varieties of Open Government Data by conducting case studies in Berlin (fall 2014), London (spring 2015) and finally New York City (fall 2015).