Manuel Castells: Information age, Works, Books, Awards

Manuel Castells was born in Spain in 1942, studied law and economics and completed in Ph.D. in sociology. His area of research was information processing. During 1968, Paris was an international center of Marxist controversy. He finished his first dissertation and was appointed as a professor in Paris at Nanterre. Castells took active participation in the student’s participation, as a result, he was expelled by the French government. As it was a political exile he was given another chance to teach in chile.

Manuel Castells has worked immensely on urban research and urban sociology. He has worked upon broad structures and analysis of spatial dynamics, immigration, informal economy, urban cultures, social movements, etc.

Castells in his volume information age presents a theoretical framework which focuses on the informational mode of production which is based on industrial mode production, in building advanced capitalism. This section is divided into three sections 1) theories of the city in advanced capitalism, 2) social movements and urban culture and 3) the city in the information age.

Castells shows the transformation of the Spanish cities in the structures and availability of public housing, preservation of city areas and improvement of city services. Castells also studied the growth of cities in the states of Singapore and Hong Kong. Pursuing comparative studies as his area of research, he also studied comparative analysis of the restructuring of advanced capitalist cities and information technology.  The informational city, an important work of Castells focuses on the crises of US capitalism which were structured to the production to address inflation. The information city castells carefully separate the development of information technology from capitalist restructuring. He points out that information processing had been operating at a speed and in an efficient way.

The three main important works of castells include 1) The information age: the rise of network society ( he outlines the structures of global networks, new communications. He also contrasts information age in different European nations also opens up the boundaries of modes of internet.) 2) The power of identity ( he emphasizes social movements in the information age, he described religious movement of Japan, military movement of United States also the international environmental movements, women’s movements, etc) 3) End of Millennium ( Castells discusses the end of soviet union as it failed to come to terms with the informational economy).  He also explains the gap between the elites and the capitalist, he also focuses on the growth of economies of the pacific rim with high technology and advanced industries. His major focus of the work was on information technology and global economic transformations and changes which come with the capitalist world system.

According to Castells, globalization is not the same everywhere the intensity varies with different places, but it can be understood in relation to historical, and the analysis of labour in relation with the state and the policies also with inclusion and exclusion of global networks.

2010 Erasmus Medal of Science from Academia Europaea

2012 Holberg Memorial Prize from the Parliament of Norway

2013 Balzan Prize in the Social Sciences from the International Balzan Prize Foundation.


Castells, Manuel. 2002, “Local and Global: Cities in the Network Society”, in The RoyalDutch Geographical Society KNAG, Vol. 93, No. 5, Blackwell Publishers. pp. 548–558

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