Elements for a Geography of Telecommunication

  • Henry Bakis Universite de Paris I
Keywords: Telecommunication, Structuration of Space


The introduction of telecommunication techniques alters the time and space scales. Distance hardly means anything anymore and even time has been brought under control. The planet seems to have shrunk surprisingly - less time is needed to contact any point on the globe than was needed less than a century ago to contact towns and villages from the capital of an average-size European country. A new social space-time structure is presently in the process of rapid development although this structure was conceived more than a century ago and its importance has gradually been asserting itself. Nations and, at least to the same extent, the most powerful multi-national companies in the electronic field, set up and control this new social space-time structure. Understanding the new structuration of space taking place should be one of the tasks to which the geographer together with specialists from other disciplines and government officials should devote himself. It is thus perhaps more necessary than ever to attempt to define this field of study. This is what we shall try to do here by outlining some lines of research. We cannot of course hope to be exhaustive. We shall only mention some topics worthy of interest.


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