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Mobile Communications Workshop

Date: 09/01/2004 Time: 09.00am - 1.30pm

Centre for Mobilities Research, Lancaster University

with sponsorship from

The Institute for Advanced Studies in Management and Social Sciences

9 January 2004, Lancaster House Hotel, 9:00am - 1:30pm

Organisers: Mimi Sheller (CeMoRe)Sue Peters (Institute for Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development)John Urry (CeMoRe)

Technological, social and cultural developments in public and private transportation, mobile communications, information storage and retrieval, surveillance systems and 'intelligent environments', are rapidly changing the nature of travel and of communications conducted at-a-distance. As mobile connectivity begins to occur in new ways across a wide range of cyber-devices and integrated places, so we need better theorization and research, especially to examine the interdependencies between changes in physical movement and in electronic communications, and especially in their increasing convergence. Such new intersecting mobilities are centre-stage within contemporary economic, social and technological developments and in generating profound policy issues, especially in how a mobile life is sustainable into the long-term. This workshop aims to bring together social theorists with academic and commercial applied researchers to address these issues.

Workshop Themes

  • Are technological and socio-cultural changes in mobile communication leading to a shift from 'network' structures to more fluid, ubiquitous, or distributed systems?

  • If so, with what effects on social practices, institutions, and markets?

  • What are some of the future scenarios for the development of mobile communications, mobile and ubiquitous computing, and mobile multimedia from a range of technical, economic, social, and cultural perspectives?

  • What are the emerging complexities, risks, and governance structures associated with these future scenarios?

  • What new modes of social exclusion, uneven development, and power relations are emerging in relation to these socio-technical developments?

Workshop Programme

9:00am-9:15 Welcome and Coffee

9:15--10:45am Emerging Mobile Technologies(Three fifteen-minute presentations followed by discussion)

Paul Coulton, Dept of Communication Systems, Lancaster University'Mobile Evolution: The Road to 3G and Beyond'

Andrew Scott, Dept of Computing, LandMARC team (Lancaster and Microsoft Active Research Collaboration) 'Mobile technologies'

Richard Harper, Director, Appliance Studio 'In the hand: inside the head' Social Shaping Research, Newbury

10:45-11:00 Coffee Break

11:00-12:30 Emerging Mobile Socialities(Three fifteen-minute presentations followed by discussion)

Michael Hulme, Chairman, Teleconomy, and Henley Management College 'Me, My Mobile and I'

Christian Licoppe, Director, France Telecom Social Science Laboratory 'Sociological studies of mobile phone use'

Nina Wakeford, Director INCITE, University of Surrey 'Communications on the Move'

12:30-1.30 concluding session and buffet lunch

Alternative Mobilities Futures main site

Event website:


Who can attend: Anyone


Further information

Organising departments and research centres: Centre for Mobilities Research (CeMoRe), Sociology

Keywords: communication, Mobilities


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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Lancaster University
Lancaster LA1 4YD
United Kingdom

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