Josh Lepawsky (Memorial University)
I study the geographies of modern wastes. To date my work has focussed on global flows of electronic discards or 'e-waste'. I am currently developing work on offworld rubbish. Both are quintessential examples of modern waste in that they are composed of synthetic materials, are heterogeneous in composition, and entail high degrees of uncertainty around managing their generation and disposition. Both cases offer charismatic ways into broad questions with which modern waste generation is entangled such as sustainability, innovation, ethics, and justice. E-waste represents the shadow of the information or knowledge economy with the hopes and desires of ‘dematerialization’ that often accompany it. Offworld rubbish raises fundamental questions about being and belonging to a species whose scientific and technological capacities are generating discards and waste not only terrestrially, but also in orbit around Earth and on the surface of other extraterrestrial worlds.
You can also find me at:
Reassembling Rubbish (Flipboard)
Affiliated Research Groups
Founding Member of Memorial University's Science and Technology Studies Initiative: MUNSTS
WASTESTS Research Group