Governing Smart Spaces Through Autonomous Vehicles

  • Jannice KällEmail author
Part of the MPI Studies on Intellectual Property and Competition Law book series (MSIP, volume 29)


Autonomous vehicles may be understood to govern the spaces around them through their technological composites. This understanding of governance, or control, diverges from established perspectives in intellectual property and competition law according to which technological control is assessed in relation to societal, or market, effects. This chapter bypasses such questions by exploring how autonomous vehicles can be understood to interact with their surrounding environment, whether urban or not, and how this in itself can be considered a new form of control.

To arrive at a visualization of this type of governance, a theory of spatial property is here deployed and developed. In short, this theory implies that property can be understood as something that holds up bodies in, and as, space. The aim of pursuing such a perspective is to show that governance occurs through different interfaces between autonomous vehicles and space. In sum, this chapter suggests a threefold understanding of governance in terms of how autonomous vehicles could govern smart spaces: through data commodification, through control over the surrounding space’s materialities and through control over the interpretation of space.


Autonomous vehicles Property Smart cars Spatial property Spatial theory Spatiolegal theory Spatial justice 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociology of LawLund UniversityLundSweden

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