The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Burcu Baykurt joins Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society as Faculty Associate

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Burcu Baykurt, assistant professor of communicationBurcu Baykurt, assistant professor of communication, has joined the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society (KBC) at Harvard University as a faculty associate.

Together with BKC faculty, staff, and alumni, the incoming cohort of BKC fellows will pursue research, collaborations, and community-building to address issues at the intersection of technology and society, with a commitment to the public interest.

Incoming fellows are joined by new faculty associates and affiliates with experience working in companies, organizations, and academic institutions around the globe. These community members form and strengthen the bonds of the growing BKC network of people who bring a broad range of backgrounds, expertise, and perspectives.

Baykurt's work examines the social and cultural implications of digital technologies, with a particular focus on infrastructures, governance, and inequalities. Her book project, The City as Data Machine, is based on fieldwork and interviews she conducted over three years in Kansas City, where residents and public officials have partnered with Google and Cisco to test a gigabit internet service and a smart city program respectively.Baykyurt examines the ways digital infrastructures change how cities manage and experience urban inequalities.

Baykurt's other projects include a historical review of soft power internationalism and technologies of globalization, and sociological accounts of failure in the contemporary tech industry.

In May, Baykurt co-authored an article that examines what smartness does on the ground by investigating how its anticipatory media visions have been interpreted and acted on in policy decisions and local implementations since the early 2000s. The article, “What smartness does in the smart city: From visions to policy,” was published online by Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies.