Sarah Wagner

Sarah has been a PhD Fellow at the IN3 in the Information and Knowledge Society Doctorate Programme since 2012. Her research analyzes the position of indigenous communities within mobile telephony policy and industry structures from an interdisciplinary perspective.  She conceptualizes mobile communication as an intercultural relation between technologies—embedded with Western and capitalist biases through their production and ownership—and local communicative ecologies.  Currently she is conducting research with Guaraní communities in Argentina and Bolivia, using qualitative methods, drawing on an academic background in development anthropology and philosophy.  Originally from Vancouver Island, Canada, she has a Master of Arts in Philosophy and a Master of Science in Cultures and Development Studies from KU Leuven in Belgium.  Her research develops a political economy approach to ‘digital inclusion,’ bringing together analyses of mobile media industries, ICT public policies and local-level mobile appropriation. Recent results have been presented at a number of international conferences, from Bogotá to Dakar.

Contact: swagner (at) uoc (dot) edu

Research interests: Decolonization of ICT, political economy of mobile media, indigenous media, cultural revitalization.

Current projects:



  • International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) Conference, 2015 (Montreal). Communicative hegemonies and counterpublics: ICT appropriation among Guaraní leaders in Bolivia.
  • International Communication Association (ICA) Conference, 2015 (San Juan). Not us, the youth! ICT adoption and generational expectations in the cultural trajectory of the Guaraní.
  • International Communication Association (ICA) Mobile Pre-Conference, 2015 (San Juan). Cultural hegemony and resistance: Contestations of mobile technologies among Guaraní in Argentina and Bolivia.
  • ECREA European Communication Conference 2014 (Lisbon).  Subjugating or Empowering? The Dual Role of Mobile Communication Media in a Guaraní Community in Greater Buenos Aires
  • Communication Policy Research Conference CPR-LATAM 2014 (Bogotá). What about Mobile App Governance? The Limited Understanding of Audiovisual Communication in Argentina´s Law 26.522
  • M4D Mobile Communication for Development Conference 2014 (Dakar). Mobile Inclusion in the Information Age: the Relevance of Indigenous Media Movements to M4D
  • First Open University of Catalonia International Research Symposium (Barcelona).  Reterritorializing Sociotechnical Networks: Mobile App Development and the ‘Communication with Identity’ Movement in Argentina (Poster)
  • Mobile Telephony in the Developing World Conference 2013 (Jyvaskyla, Finland). Reframing Digital Inequalities: End User Inclusion and the App Industry in Bolivia and Argentina.