PHD:
UNDERSTANDING CARBON LOCK-IN OF ENERGY AND INFORMATION SYSTEMS
THROUGH POWER/IGNORANCE

Theorizing two case studies of potential energy system flexibility 
from a new economics perspective


I hold an interdisciplinary PhD from the Technical Faculty of IT & Design of Aalborg University in Denmark. My doctoral dissertation combines critical organization studies, new economics, science and technology studies and sustainable energy planning and asks why the global use of fossil fuels continues to increase when the urgency of a transformation to renewable energy is obvious. In two case studies, I examine how carbon lock-in takes place in the making of information and energy infrastructure. Case study A examines the approval process around the Danish-British electric interconnector project Viking Link. Case study B looks at the pursuit of peer-to-peer electricity trading enabled by the information technology blockchain.


PhD advisor:
Professor Frede Hvelplund, Department of Planning, Aalborg University, Denmark

The PhD consists of three research articles (see below) and an extended cover essay.
The cover essay is structured the following way:

Chapter 1: Extended Introduction
SECTION A: REFLECTIONS ON RESEARCH ORGANIZATION
Chapter 2: Mono-, Inter and Transdisciplinarity
Chapter 3: From Old to New Economics
Chapter 4: Methodological reflections

SECTION B: PHILOSOPHICAL REFLECTIONS
Chapter 5: Fossil versus Renewable Energomaterialisms
Chapter 6: Fleck's Constructivist Epistemology
Chapter 7: Conclusions: The Power/Ignorance Concept

SECTION C: ESCAPING LOCK-IN BY TRANSFORMING IGNORANCE
Chapter 8: Policy Considerations
Extended Afterword

 



Assessment committee:
Professor Inge Røpke (Chair), Department of Planning, Aalborg University (DK)
Professor Dominic Boyer, Rice University (US)
Professor Catherine Mitchell, University of Exeter (UK)


Date of PhD Viva: June 10, 2020.

Moderator: Senior Advisor Margrethe Holm Andersen, Department of Politics and Society, Aalborg University (DK)

PAPERS OF THE DISSERTATION

Along with the extended cover essay, three papers comprise my PhD dissertation:

 
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Le Foucaldien (2019)

FROM FOUCAUDIAN BIOPOWER TO INFOPOWER AND ENERGOPOWER

A Review of Colin Koopman's and Dominic Boyer's Novel Conceptualizations of Power

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Oeconomia (2020)

CONSTRUCTING VIKING LINK

How the Infopower of Cost-benefit Analysis as a Calculative Device Reinforces the Energopower of TransmissionInfrastructure

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Ephemera (2022)

POWER STRUGGLES ON THE BLOCKCHAIN

Exploring power/ignorance in conflicts over de- versus recentralization

OTHER PAPERS AND PUBLICATIONS

During the PhD period, I have also published in a German journal and a German newspaper:

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Tagesspiegel Energie & Klima

EIN KABEL FÜR DEUTSCHEN KOHLESTROM

Co-authored with Brian Vad Mathiesen, Henrik Lund and Søren Djørup, Aalborg University.

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Zeitschrift für neues Energierecht

VOM VERTEILNETZ ZUM NETZ DES ZUSAMMENSPIELS

Zur neuen Rolle von Verteilnetzen in erneuerbaren Energiesystemen in Dänemark und Deutschland

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FoucaultBlog

Kirsten Hasberg talks to Dominic Boyer, anthropologist and author of Energopolitics: Wind and Power in the Anthroprocene, and to Colin Koopman, philosopher and author of How We Became our Data: A Genealogy of the Informational Person.

EXERPT FROM PHD VIVA