A scholar, writer, and educator in digital media history and ecology, techno-cultural studies, and the Asian and global history of cities.
I (she/her/hers) am an Assistant Professor of Communication at Seoul National University and a Research Affiliate at the Center for Just Infrastructures and the Community Data Clinic at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
My research explores the history and politics of "smart" urban environments as they manifest in various communities across Asia and North America. While these digital developments are often presented as the "solution to the problems," my research investigates how and why those problems are considered "problematic" in the first place, how those problems are historically and socioculturally composed, what long terms concerns about security, economy, health, and well-being are integrated into the problems that are supposedly "new." My work has appeared in venues including Big Data & Society, Telematics & Informatics, and Communication & Sport, among others.
Previously I held Postdoctoral positions at the School of Information Sciences (ischool) at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign; the School of Literature, Media, and Communication (LMC) at the Georgia Institute of Technology; and the Program in Science, Technology, and Society (STS) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). I have been an Emerging Voices Fellow at the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS).
I earned my Ph.D. in Communications and Media from the Institute of Communications Research (ICR) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). Prior to my doctoral work, I completed both my M.A. and B.A. in Communication from Seoul National University.
See also Publications
Yang, C. (2022). Digital Contact Tracing in the Pandemic Cities: Problematizing the regime of traceability in South Korea. Big Data & Society.
Yang, C. & C. L. Cole. (2022). Smart Stadium as a Laboratory of Innovation: Technology, Sport, and Datafied Normalization of the Fans. Communication &Sport.
Yang, C. (2020). Historicizing the Smart Cities: Genealogy as a Method of Critique for Smart Urbanism. Telematics and Informatics.
See also Research
Remapping Smart Cities: A History of Technological Futures in Korea is a book project based on my fieldwork in Songdo, known as South Korea's first "smart" city. I trace the long history of Songdo from the vantage point of South Korean urban and media history in the twentieth century.
Community-driven approach to addressing public safety in post-pandemic cities is a collaborative research project that looks at what is happening at the margins of "smart safe cities" and gathers resources to envision alternative forms of ensuring urban safety.
Studies in East Asian Media is a graduate seminar I taught in 2023 Spring which introduced the students to the history and politics of technologies, cultures, and infrastructures in Easia Asia. Students explored multiple "peripheries" in Seoul and gathered their stories as form of a storymap.