Migrating the state into corporate clouds

Dan M. Kotliar, Alex Gekker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines the cloudification of the state by focusing on ‘Project Nimbus’–a $1.2 billion tender offered by the Israeli government to move ‘the entire Israeli state’ into corporate clouds. As one of the biggest informational infrastructure projects Israel has known, Nimbus revolves around the construction or repurposing of six massive, resource-hungry corporate data centers and the ‘migration’ of the state into them. Accordingly, Nimbus potentially redraws the relationship between the state and big tech, as well as between the state and its citizens. Based on thematic analysis of various project-related sources, we highlight four main aspects of the ‘cloudification of the state.’ First, focusing on cloud ideology, we expose the neo-liberal logics behind the construction of the Nimbus data centers. Second, focusing on cloud epistemology, we show that the effort and organizational changes that come with the cloudification of the state translate into an acute dependence on the tech giants. Third, focusing on the DCaaSization of the state, we argue that with its reliance on DCaaS (‘data center as a service’), the state's ‘behind the scenes’ is fading into the tech giants’ backstage. Lastly, we argue that this cloudification translates into disseminating advanced AI-powered data processing tools alongside pronounced data-ist Silicon Valley ideologies. We conclude by arguing that the construction of the Nimbus data centers and the subsequent cloudification of the state enhance power and information asymmetries between the state and big tech and discuss the data-coloniality of this new cloudified power structure.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInformation Communication and Society
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • DCaaS
  • Project Nimbus
  • The cloud
  • cloudification
  • data centers
  • data colonialism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Library and Information Sciences


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