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Curtin University
Humanities

Internet Studies

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Our Vision

The Internet provides humanity with a most profound challenge, as we collectively imagine, invent, apply and critique new technologies of information and communication. We must come to terms with the complex intertwining of the Internet with our diverse social experiences and cultural sensibilities. We need to recognise the archaeological traces of the past and the visions of the future that are embedded in the Internet and the way they influence our present.

Within popular mythology, the Internet appears in hopeful dreams of opportunity and dark nightmares of extended exploitation. Such polarity is misleading. The Internet is both positive and negative in its implications. The net is, all at once, inside humanity and outside, the vector of change and an interface between ourselves imagined and ourselves feared. Our identity, our sense of community, our understandings of ourselves as informational and communicative beings will change, are changing, have already changed. And the Internet's most radical effects will be felt at that point where it becomes so commonplace as to be invisible.

Our program develops two distinct features: it is immersed within the Internet, investigating from inside, while exploring the boundary between the Internet and what lies outside. The Internet Studies program grounds itself in the unstable relationship between current needs and future possibilities: responding to the social groups that we serve, but acting on our responsibility to change and lead society in new directions.

Curtin University's Internet Studies emerged in 2000 joining other innovative programs around the world to meet the needs of society for a scholarly response and critical contribution to the Internet's challenge. Since then, we have graduated well over 100 students at bachelor's, master's and doctoral level who now take our vision, change it, develop it, and invent anew their own ideas about the Internet: critical, creative and committed to the possibilities of communication over networks. Join the students and researchers who make Internet Studies and share our vision.

Contact Internet Studies: internetstudies@curtin.edu.au