Citizenship and sovereignty are traditionally rooted in territorial belonging; however, as transnational flows of people, capital, goods, and information continue to expand, this conception is undermined.
The above mentioned flows are sustained on infrastructures of supranational scope. Thus, conflicts over citizenship can, in most cases, be understood as conflicts over such infrastructures. Decision-making regarding the flow, access, and motility of citizens and goods takes place in very specific places. Borders, customs, and other controls are precisely the touchpoints between jurisdictions and infrastructural systems. Decision-making in infrastructure space relies heavily on techno-legal procedures of information exchange. Driven by promises of automation, increased efficiency, and growth margins, data sharing is becoming a frequent narrative in the logistics industry. A diversity of strategies, from centralised options based on co-owned databases to decentralised systems based on smart contracts and blockchains, is currently being implemented. There is no single solution, but all are based on ubiquitous sensing apparatuses and mobile data storage infrastructures. Such transitions take a slower path when it comes to systems that manage humans rather than cargo. While this might appear to be an eminently technical transformation, the reality is far more intricate. The lack of trust due to strategy and security concerns about information sharing is a key factor in stopping procedural automation. This applies to states, government branches, institutions, and corporations alike. Extra layers of difficulty appear to coordinate operations among systems that track entities of a different categorical order, use different protocols, or simply speak a different language.
The project was developed under the following assumptions:
1. The proliferation of sensing infrastructures does not only hold the potential of tracking people and cargo, but also to visualise systems and power structures while moving bureaucracy to the back-end.
2. New levels of control require new rights, and ultimately new levels of freedom in exchange. Therefore, it is crucial to consider the implications of a system growing at scale, and the relationship with final users.
3. The way different organisations interact is as important as how they behave within their respective clusters. The interstitial space between well-established actors can be used as leverage to grow as a platform.