Mentioned in the 2020 Massey Lectures!

2020 Massey Lectures: Renowned tech expert Ronald J. Deibert to explore disturbing impact of social media


“In lecture four, he will review the negative environmental impacts associated with social media, from electronic mining to cloud computing’s contributions to CO2 emissions and the growing problem of electronic waste. “

Launching the EML and Heliotrope


Write toward the light.

Submit here:

The Environmental Media Lab (EML) at the University of Calgary is seeking submissions on a rolling basis for Heliotrope: Writing toward the light, a space for publishing short think-&-feel pieces. Heliotrope is a space for scholars and practitioners to explore and share your work — and to ask new questions.

The EML invites a wide range of submissions from anyone who studies topics at the intersection of:  1) media and technology 2) environmental humanities 3) special topics (currently: bioinformatics and genomics)

Submissions should be between 500 (min) and 1500 words (max). We also welcome accompanying video and audio pieces, although we do not currently have space to host them ourselves. Please get permission for your images as needed. We prefer that references be hyperlinked, but please also include citations at the end (in whatever style you prefer). We encourage you to end your piece with a set of questions, prompts, or provocations. Let us know if a component of this work is published elsewhere.

Environmental Media engages an array of media texts, discourses, and objects, to understand the mutual entanglements of media and environment. We look at documentary films and podcasts, media campaigns, advertisements, etc., to understand and analyze representations of naturecultures. We look at the lifecycle of our current global communications infrastructures, from mining rare earth minerals, imperialism and colonialism, e-waste, sensors and towers, data centers, the cloud, 5G, — to everything that connects the ‘wired’ world. We look globally at how ‘natural’ disasters, racism, pandemics, genomics, climate change, mass food systems, and pollution have become inscribed into the environment, and how nature itself becomes medium and message.

To launch Heliotrope, we welcome submissions that explore our special topic – bioinformatics and genomics – in unexpected and creative ways. Consider the idea of interludes—the moments in between, the pauses, the spaces of anticipation and hesitation, the creative and kinetic potential in the moments of stillness at the eye of a storm. Wanting just as much as our writers to embody practices of curiosity, generosity, and imagination, our editorial team is committed to providing constructive feedback to all submissions.

Accepted pieces will be published regularly and on a rolling basis, starting September 2020.

Write to Heliotrope’s co-editors, Mél Hogan, Crystal Chokshi and Tessa Brown, at

Publication: Politics of Withdrawal (Rowman and Littlefield)

Politics of Withdrawal

Media, Arts, Theory


Politics of Withdrawal considers the significance of practices and theories of withdrawal for radical thinking today. With contributions of major theorists in the fields of contemporary political philosophy, cultural studies and media studies, the chapters investigate the multiple contexts, possibilities and impasses of political withdrawal – from the radical to the seemingly mundane – and reflect a range of case studies varying from the political thinking of Debord, the Invisible Committee, Moten and Harney, feminist notions of ‘strike’ and ‘exit’, and indigenous forms of sabotage, to the individual retreat as means of reconfiguring political subjectivity. It looks at technological failure as disconnection from surveillance, and from alternative financial futures to contemporary ‘pharmako-politics.’

The volume provides a vital grip on a key notion in contemporary radical politics, in all its complexity, contradictions and tribulations. 



transmediale 2020, Berlin: Empires and Ecologies of the Cloud


Symposium: 28 Jan – 01 Mar, Berlin

The symposium of transmediale features two intensive days of in-depth exchange, screenings, performances, and artistic interventions. More than 50 artists and thinkers will examine networks as social, technological, and artistic infrastructures. Looking back at an era of network idealism, they will ask if the network is still a viable model to react to urgent challenges such as climate change and the consequences of artificial intelligence—and what a future after the network society might look like.


Exchange Session #2
Empires and Ecologies of the Cloud

Among others with Daphne Dragona, Mél Hogan, Ulises Ali Mejias


Do you care about the future of climate change in Calgary? Come join us and hear the Graduate College Scholars share their work! All Graduate Scholars are invited and encouraged to invite guests. Please ensure that all guests register. Seating is limited. A selection of gourmet treats and snacks will be provided! 


Event Schedule


Doors open, mingling 


Opening remarks 


Keynote- Dr. Mél Hogan


Speaker 1- Tessa Brown


Speaker 2- Emily Macphail


Speaker 3- Suzanne Chew


Speaker 4- Amy Spark


Q and A with all speakers


Concluding remarks