Ingmar Lippert

Ingmar Lippert

Data Practices and Digital Accountability

Expanding on my PhD work, I continue to follow the empirically grounded hypothesis that data is not given but made. Etymologically "data" refers to the given (from Latin dare, the given). However data is not given but, rather, made. Data emerges as facts (etymologically, factum, in Latin, something done). Doing data means facts. And fact-making is a central object of STS. I specifically focus on how practices of preparing, configuring and achieving data are entangled with rendering these practices transparent and accountable. My take on practices and abilities of accounting digitally attends simultaneously to how abilities to respond, response-abilities, are configured, enabled and constrained in socio-technical infrastructures.

Corporate Carbon

Global climate change solutions are dominantly addressed as hinging on changes in industrial and economic relations. Production and services need to be de-carbonised, moving away from the carbon economy. This project addresses ethnographically how corporate carbon accounting, in one of the 50 largest companies on the damaged planet earth, manages to render visible the carbon intensity of the multinational's operations. Positioned between STS, environmental sociology and organisation studies, I analyse how carbon accounting enacts environments and identify patterns of accounted-for-environmental impacts that serve to stabilise the financial core interests, whilst ensuring that the environment does not interfer within the transnational corporation's centre. Internal externalities, indeed.

Environmental Management Studies

Environmental management and governance supposedly serve in modern attempts to achieve sustainable development. Universities abound with study programmes in environmental management, resource management and their governance. Conventionally, researchers with a focus on "environmental management" review existing management instruments and improve the latter or develop alternative instruments. My research takes a radically different approach: I approach environmental management as situated practices. By this I refer to the work and labour by agents of ecological modernisation as well as to the historical, geographical and political configuration of their day-to-day work practice. In the foreground of my take on environmental management studies are, then, environmental managers and their instruments and their actual use. These I approach ethnographically, contributing to critical environmental studies, human geography, environmental sociology and an environmental or earthly STS.
Selected Output
  • "Environmental Management as Situated Practice" Geoforum special issue, edited with Franz Krause and Niklas Hartmann (2016)
    free access via
  • "Latour’s Gaia – Not down to Earth?: Social Studies of Environmental Management for Grounded Understandings of the Politics of Human-Nature Relationships", in: Yearbook 2012 of the Institute for Advanced Studies on Science, Technology and Society (2014)
    free access via
  • "Limits to Managing the Environment" edited book part, in: Implementing Environmental and Resource Management (2011)
    free access via
  • "Disposed to Unsustainability? Ecological Modernisation as a Techno-Science Enterprise with Conflicting Normative Orientations", in: Yearbook 2009 of the Institute for Advanced Studies on Science, Technology and Society (2010)
    free access via