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Digital identity and inclusion: tracing technological transitions

Schoemaker, Emrys, Martin, Aaron and Weitzberg, Keren (2023) Digital identity and inclusion: tracing technological transitions. Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, 24 (1). pp. 36-45. ISSN 1526-0054

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Identification Number: 10.1353/gia.2023.a897699


It is increasingly challenging for policymakers and other stakeholders to appreciate the growing complexity of the digital identity ecosystem, the technologies involved, and the broad implications of their deployment. This article seeks to help clarify these current debates and controversies by highlighting some of the technological transformations that are underway in the sector. We trace the ongoing transitions from “Big ID” systems to self-sovereign identity (SSI) approaches and digital wallets to the recent emergence of super apps, analyzing the different geographies of these systems and their impacts on exclusion and power relations. We argue that all technologies are political, and digital identity technologies especially so. Despite recent moves towards decentralization couched in the rhetoric of individual empowerment, most systems continue to exhibit features of centralization and tend to reinforce existing institutional arrangements.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2023 Walsh School of Foreign Service.
Divisions: Media and Communications
Subjects: T Technology
Date Deposited: 01 Sep 2023 11:33
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2024 19:15

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