Digital Sustainability - Special Thematic Issue
Call for papers in the Journal: Digital Policy, Regulation and Governance

Early Consideration of Abstracts: 15 August 2020
Notice of Interest: 30 August 2020
Article submission deadline: 31 October 2020
Reviews Returned: 15 January 2021
Revisions Due: 31 March 2021
Publication Schedule: Q3 of 2021

Special issue editors:
Massimo Ragnedda, Northumbria University (UK): [log in to unmask]
Glenn Muschert, Khalifa University of Science & Technology (UAE): [log in to unmask]

Overview of Special Issue
The issues of digital transformation and sustainability are extremely timely. This is simultaneously the age of digital transformation and the age in which humanity has established a coherent set of sustainability goals to be achieved by 2030, namely the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). What is less commonly discussed is the role that digital technologies, digital skills, and digital social life will play in the pursuit and maintenance of a sustainable future. This special issue offers a forum for that conversation to emerge, as a venue in which social scientists, STS scholars, and other digital scholars can explore the concept of digital sustainability with an eye toward establishing a conceptual framework for defining and theorizing digital sustainability, for studying and assessing digital sustainability, and for plotting out applied methodologies for implementing principles of digital sustainability in real, augmented, and virtual spheres. Thus, the special issue on digital sustainability will open up new scholarly and applied conversations regarding precisely the intersection between digital aspects of human life and wider sustainability concerns for humanity and the planet.

The aims of the project are to connect contemporary scholarship in digital sociology with scholarship concerning sustainability, and thereby to carve out a new sub-field for digital sustainability. The goals are as follows:

Establish a concept of digital sustainability, and to define the theoretical and conceptual parameters of the idea. Map out methodological approaches for the study and assessment of digital sustainability. Conceptualize how digital sustainability can be enhanced in applied settings. These goals will be met via the academic investigations assembled in the special issue.

Indicative List of Anticipated Themes
-Theorizing digital sustainability
-Measuring sustainability
-Methodologies for assessment of digital sustainability
-Mapping plans to achieve digital sustainability
-Exploration of the role of advanced computing in digital sustainability, such as ---AI, big data, quantum computing, blockchain, cryptocurrency
-Exploration of various forms of social reality as aspects of digital sustainability, such as RL, VR, AR, and XR
-Exploration of digital sustainability and the human-computer interface(s)
-The relevance of digital skills in digital sustainability
-The role of digital infrastructure in digital sustainability
-E-waste, energy usage, and other ecological concerns
-The role(s) of infrastructure, hardware, or software in digital sustainability
-The role of formal social institutions (public, private, or NGO) in digital sustainability  

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