Talk: The Rise of Intellectual Monpoly Capitalism

On 04 October 2022, 9 am to 11 am, ECDF will host a lecture by Dr. Cecilia Rikap, City University London, on "The Rise of Intellectual Monpoly Capitalism." The event ist jointly organized by ECDF-Professor Dr. Philipp Staab und Dr. Florian Butollo (Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin und Weizenbaum-Institut für die vernetzte Gesellschaft).

What distinguishes contemporary global capitalism from its predecessors? According to Cecilia Rikap, the key to answering this question lies in the concentration of intangible assets. In particular, the rise of large technology companies can be explained by their control of innovation processes and the protection and use of intellectual property rights. As "intellectual monopolies," they are managing to usurp ever larger shares of value creation. How does this new capitalism work? What role does the state play in the current geopolitical constellation? And: What are the guard rails of a critique of digital monopolies? Rikap explores these questions in her lecture "The Rise of Intellectual Monopoly Capitalism." Rikap is one of the most important international voices of a contemporary critique of capitalism. She joined City University in London in September 2021 as a permanent lecturer in International Political Economy (IPE). Her research focuses on the political economy of science and technology. She studies the increasing concentration of intangible assets leading to the emergence of intellectual monopolies, including in the technology and pharmaceutical industries, the distribution of intellectual rents (including data), the resulting geopolitical tensions, and the implications of knowledge asset exploitation for the knowledge equation and for development policy. Her recent work focuses on the corporate planning of global production and innovation systems driven by intellectual monopolies, and how these leading firms, especially the tech giants, develop state-like characteristics and thereby reshape states or societies.

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