Our Book of the Month choice for February

The SSL ‘Book of the Month’ feature highlights a book in our collection that has been chosen by one of our Subject Consultants. This may be a recent addition to our stock or an existing item that we would like to share with you.


Platform capitalism

Nick Srnicek

Polity Press, 2016

Shelfmark: HC79.I55.SRN 2016





The Book of the Month for February has been selected by John Southall, Bodleian Data Librarian and Subject Consultant for Economics, Sociology and Social Policy and Intervention. It was chosen because of the way it offers insights into the direction of the digital economy not just in terms of technology or social impact but also as part of the wider system of capitalism and ongoing economic development.

Book Overview

This brief and succinct book begins with a consideration of three economic milestones of the last fifty years: ‘the response to the 1970s downturn; the boom and bust of the 1990s; and the response to the 2008 crisis’. Srnicek then outlines the rise of business models capitalising on big data and the development of their monopolising platforms. In this characterisation, data is synonymous with oil, i.e. a resource ‘to be extracted, refined, and used in a variety of ways’ (40). He then assesses the present state of the platforms – specifically their tendencies towards monopoly competition and their options for future development or extinction.


‘…Srnicek builds an illuminating 120-page dissertation on where the platform came from, and where it might take us.’                                                                           Literary Review of Canada

‘Platform Capitalism aims to undermine the self-aggrandising narratives of Silicon Valley, casting a critical eye onto the landscape of the leading capitalist firms.’        Polity – Book Reviews

Where can I find it?

We have one library use only copy of the title. The shelfmark is HC79.I55.SRN 2016.

What would your SSL Book of the Month be? Do you have a favourite book in our collection? If so, we would love to know what it is. Add a comment below or email us.


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