Novemer 5 Milton Mueller on Networks and States

You are cordially invited to a special Information Society Project breakfast discussion with Dr. Milton Mueller on his new book Networks and States (MIT Press 2010).  The event will take place on November 5 in Room 121 of Yale Law School.  Please note that we will be meeting at 10:30 a.m. and will have coffee and breakfast.

Milton L. Mueller is a globally renowned Internet scholar and a Professor at Syracuse University's School of Information Studies. He is the author of Ruling the Root: Internet Governance and the Taming of Cyberspace (MIT Press, 2002) and many other books and articles.

About Networks and States: The Global Politics of Internet Governance

When the prevailing system of governing divides the planet into mutually exclusive territorial monopolies of force, what institutions can govern the Internet, with its transnational scope, boundless scale, and distributed control? Given filtering-censorship by states and concerns over national cyber-security, it is often assumed that the Internet will inevitably be subordinated to the traditional system of nation-states. In Networks and States, Milton Mueller counters this, showing how Internet governance poses novel and fascinating governance issues that give rise to a global politics and new transnational institutions. Drawing on theories of networked governance, Mueller provides a broad overview of Internet governance from the formation of ICANN to the clash at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), the formation of the Internet Governance Forum, the global assault on peer-to-peer file sharing and the rise of national-level Internet control and security concerns.

Mueller identifies four areas of conflict and coordination that are generating a global politics of Internet governance: intellectual property, cyber-security, content regulation, and the control of critical Internet resources (domain names and IP addresses). He investigates how recent theories about networked governance and peer production can be applied to the Internet, offers case studies that illustrate the Internet's unique governance problems, and charts the historical evolution of global Internet governance institutions, including the formation of a transnational policy network around the WSIS.

Internet governance has become a source of conflict in international relations. Networks and States explores the important role that emerging transnational institutions could play in fostering global governance of communication-information policy.