Laura Innocenti

Thèse en cours

Sous la direction du Prof Francisco R. Klauser

“Reimagining ‘Smart’ Farming Futures between Local Specificities and Global Forces. A Swiss Case Study”

Digital, increasingly connected technologies are transforming agriculture into what is sometimes referred to as ‘digital agriculture’ or ‘smart farming’.

This study is concerned with the digitization of agriculture in Switzerland and its making and shaping between the Swiss national context and global trends, between local and international actors. It focuses on ‘smart farming’ technology producers and providers, their visions of ‘smart farming’ and their daily work and challenges towards a digital agricultural future. As central element of sociotechnical imaginaries, visions here are considered powerful in guiding and supporting action towards certain directions, yet in not determining.

This PhD research project explores companies’ roles in constructing and making a ‘digital agriculture’ as well as how they transform or perpetuate agricultural representations and assemblages. It does so considering how these come together and are formed between local specificities and global actors and trends.

In order two answer these questions I study a small sample of Swiss as well as multinational providers of digital agricultural solutions with regard to how they imagine, negotiate and make their future smart farming visions in a global market. I analyze textual data in combination with interviews and nonparticipant observation drawing on discourse analysis.


Keywords: Digitization, agriculture, ‘smart farming’, sociotechnical imaginaries, local-global tensions, Switzerland



Laura has studied social & cultural anthropology in interdisciplinary programs at the universities of Lucerne and Neuchâtel. Between her studies she has digitized photographs and transcribed journals for a digital humanities project with the Bruno Manser Fonds. Her Master’s thesis investigated how people living with connected home automation perceive and make use of technology with regard to control and security issues. Her interest for questions of power relations and ethics in the context of current digitization in/of private and public spaces of living, working and governing has led her to join the geography institute at UniNE and undertake the above-mentioned PhD research project on “smart farming futures”.


Teaching assistant for:

  • Géographie politique I & II (BA/MA)
  • Géographies publiques (MA)
  • Migrations forcées (MA)
  • Expertise for written and oral exams (BA/MA)
  • Support for students writing their Master’s thesis




Assistante doctorante
Bureau 2.S.32
Tél. +41(0)32 718 16 18
E-mail: laura.innocenti@unine.ch