Science, Technology and Society: A Sociological Approach is a comprehensive guide to the emergent field of science, technology, and society (STS) studies and its implications for today’s culture and society. Discusses current STS topics, research tools, and theories Tackles some of the most urgent issues in current STS studies, including power and culture, race, gender, colonialism, the Internet, cyborgs and robots, and biotechnology Includes case studies, a glossary, and further reading lists.
Machine generated contents note: -- Acknowledgements -- Disrupting the Impression of Stability in the Gender-Technology Relation -- Changing Images of Computers and its Users since 1980 -- Discursive Developments Within Computer Education -- Variations in Gender-ICT Relations Among Male and Female Computer Students -- Stories About Individual Change and Transformation -- Layered Meanings and Differences Within -- Is there an Elsewhere? -- References -- Endnotes -- Index.
“HTA is a multidisciplinary process that summarizes information about the medical, social, economic and ethical issues related to the use of a health technology in a systematic, transparent, unbiased, robust manner. Its aim is to inform the formulation of safe, effective, health policies that are patient focused, and seek to achieve best value” (EUnetHTA 2007). Even though the assessment of ethical aspects of a health technology is listed as one of the objectives of a HTA process, in (...) practice, the integration of these dimensions into reports remains limited. The article is focused on four points: 1. the HTA concept; 2. the difficult HTA-ethics relationship; 3. the ethical issues in HTA; 4. the methods for integrating ethical analysis into HTA. (shrink)
This book provides a comprehensive introduction to the human, social and economic aspects of science and technology. It examines a broad range of issues from a variety of perspectives, using examples and experiences from Australia and around the world. The authors present complex issues in an accessible and engaging form. Topics include the responsibilities of scientists, ethical dilemmas and controversies, the Industrial Revolution, economic issues, public policy, and science and technology in developing countries. The book ends with (...) a thoughtful and provocative look towards the future. It includes extensive guides to further reading, as well as a useful section on information searching skills. This book will provoke, engage, inform and stimulate thoughtful discussion about culture, society and science. Broad and interdisciplinary, it will be of considerable value to students and teachers. (shrink)
In Search Of An Integrative Vision For Technology will stimulate its readers to consider the 'whole story that is information systems' within the context of an integrative vision of technology. It integrates disparate areas of debate and research while appreciating the contribution that philosophy can make to such thinking. It is deliberately broad in coverage, and designed to provide useful pointers so that researchers, students, practitioners, and developers can easily apply each point as needed. "Human issues of (...) class='Hi'>technology and their normative aspects" is a theme that runs throughout the entire book. The integrative vision is centered on an understanding of human practice — the twin notions of structure and direction, and the leading and the founding functions of such practice. While this understanding applies to all technologies, it is worked out in more detail for information technology. From this philosophical understanding, many interdisciplinary areas of interest are identified. (shrink)
This text provides an overview of debates in the sociology of technology, including definitions of the main terms and concepts and discussion of the dominant positions, especially in recent scholarship. At the same time, it develops a novel perspective on the subject based in critical theory, bridging work in the sociology of science and technology with wider debate in social theory. It integrates empirical and theoretical elements in well-themed chapters and draws on interesting contemporary examples such as mobile (...) phones and computer games to offer a distinctive sociological perspective on an important dimension of social life. (shrink)
New and Emerging Science and Technology (NEST) based innovations, e.g. in the field of Life Sciences or Nanotechnology, frequently raise societal and political concerns. To address these concerns NEST researchers are expected to deploy socially responsible R&D practices. This requires researchers to integrate social and ethical aspects (SEAs) in their daily work. Many methods can facilitate such integration. Still, why and how researchers should and could use SEAs remains largely unclear. In this paper we aim to relate motivations (...) for NEST researchers to include SEAs in their work, and the requirements to establish such integration from their perspectives, to existing approaches that can be used to establish integration of SEAs in the daily work of these NEST researchers. Based on our analyses, we argue that for the successful integration of SEAs in R&D practice, collaborative approaches between researchers and scholars from the social sciences and humanities seem the most successful. The only way to explore whether that is in fact the case, is by embarking on collaborative research endeavours. (shrink)
This paper looks beyond the mostly technical and business issues that currently inform the design of knowledge-based systems (e.g., expert systems) to point out that there is also a social and organisational (a socio-organisational) dimension to the issues affecting the design decisions of expert systems and other information technologies. It argues that whilst technical and business issues are considered before the design of Expert Systems, that socio-organisational issues determine the acceptance and long-run utility of the technology after it has (...) been implemented. It shows how four issues within the organisation can affect the design or the after-effects of the design and implementation of the technology. It also shows how the four issues can be considered within the structured phases of expert system development. (shrink)
The prehistory of science and technology studies -- The Kuhnian revolution -- Questioning functionalism in the sociology of science -- Stratification and discrimination -- The strong programme and the sociology of knowledge -- The social construction of scientific and technical realities -- Feminist epistemologies of science -- Actor-network theory -- Two questions concerning technology -- Studying laboratories -- Controversies -- Standardization and objectivity -- Rhetoric and discourse -- The unnaturalness of science and technology -- The public understanding (...) of science -- Expertise and public participation -- Political economies of knowledge. (shrink)
This thoughtful and engaging text challenges the widely held notion of science as somehow outside of society, and the idea that technology proceeds automatically down a singular and inevitable path. Through specific case studies involving contemporary debates, this book shows that science and technology are fundamentally part of society and are shaped by it. Draws on concepts from political sociology, organizational analysis, and contemporary social theory. Avoids dense theoretical debate. Includes case studies and concluding chapter summaries for students (...) and scholars. (shrink)
Holding the promise of both emancipation and oppression, technology at once terrifies and disturbs the social order. Its dazzles, seduces, yet it also unsettles and raises the specter of the loss of human values and our replacement by machines and silicon. In Living with Technology , Hans Oberdiek and Mary Tiles explore the cultural and philosophical tensions shrouding technology and its place in society. Examing the relationship between instrumental reason and technology, fact and value, efficient and (...) responsibility, Oberdiek and Tiles employ an accessibile and philosophical methodology to assess the embeddness of technology in daily life. Investigating such aspects of technology as its transfer to third world nations and the genetic development of seeds, Oberdiek and Tiles give the strictly practical a compellingly philosophical look--analyzing why, in fact, the West often uses technology to do rather stupid things in rather clever ways. (shrink)
Heidegger's phenomenological approach, as exhibited in Being and Time, provides a conceptual background to discussions in role?theory. His work was not meant as an empirical contribution to sociology, nor does he assimilate sociology to conceptual inquiry. Heidegger's contention is, rather, that if we understand the way in which human beings exist (the nature of Dasein) we shall understand why empirical role?theoretical inquiries are possible. Without experience, without paying attention to the facts of human life, there could be no phenomenological enterprise. (...) But by eliciting the fundamental structure of Dasein Heidegger has pointed to what makes the empirical data ultimately intelligible. The enterprise is a transcendental one, in the Kantian sense. (shrink)
Although the use of new health technologies in healthcare and medicine is generally seen as beneficial, there has been little analysis of the impact of such technologies on people's lives and understandings of health and illness. This book explores how new technologies not only provide hope for cure and well-being, but also introduce new ethical dilemmas and raise questions about the "natural" body. Focusing on the ways new health technologies intervene into our lives and affect our ideas about normalcy, the (...) body and identity, New Health Technologies explores: how new health technologies are understood by lay people and patients how the outcomes of these technologies are communicated in various clinical settings how these technologies can alter our notions of health and illness and create "new illness." Written by authors with differing backgrounds in phenomenology, social psychology, social anthropology, communication studies and the nursing sciences, this book is essential reading for students andacademics of medical sociology, health and allied studies, and anyone with an interest in new health technologies. (shrink)
Thoroughly revised, this new edition of Critical Theory of Technology rethinks the relationships between technology, rationality, and democracy, arguing that the degradation of labor--as well as of many environmental, educational, and political systems--is rooted in the social values that preside over technological development. It contains materials on political theory, but the emphasis has shifted to reflect a growing interest in the fields of technology and cultural studies.
Can we use technology in the pursuit of a good life, or are we doomed to having our lives organized and our priorities set by the demands of machines and systems? How can philosophy help us to make technology a servant rather than a master? Technology and the Good Life? uses a careful collective analysis of Albert Borgmann's controversial and influential ideas as a jumping-off point from which to address questions such as these about the role and (...) significance of technology in our lives. Contributors both sympathetic and critical examine Borgmann's work, especially his "device paradigm" apply his theories to new areas such as film, agriculture, design, and ecological restoration and consider the place of his thought within philosophy and technology studies more generally. Because this collection carefully investigates the issues at the heart of how we can take charge of life with technology, it will be a landmark work not just for philosophers of technology but for students and scholars in the many disciplines concerned with science and technology studies. (shrink)
"More than any thing else technology creates our world. It creates our wealth, our economy, our very way of being," says W. Brian Arthur. Yet, until now the major questions of technology have gone unanswered. Where do new technologies come from -- how exactly does invention work? What constitutes innovation, and how is it achieved? Why are certain regions -- Cambridge, England, in the 1920s and Silicon Valley today -- hotbeds of innovation, while others languish? Does technology, (...) like biological life, evolve? How do new industries, and the economy itself, emerge from technologies? In this groundbreaking work, pioneering technology thinker and economist W. Brian Arthur sets forth a boldly original way of thinking about technology that gives answers to these questions. The Nature of Technology is an elegant and powerful theory of technology's origins and evolution. It achieves for the progress of technology what Thomas Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions did for scientific progress. Arthur explains how transformative new technologies arise and how innovation really works. Conventional thinking ascribes the invention of technologies to "thinking outside the box," or vaguely to genius or creativity, but Arthur shows that such explanations are inadequate. Rather, technologies are put together from pieces -- themselves technologies -- that already exist. Technologies therefore share common ancestries and combine, morph, and combine again to create further technologies. Technology evolves much as a coral reef builds itself from activities of small organisms -- it creates itself from itself; all technologies are descended from earlier technologies. Drawing on a wealth of examples, from historical inventions to the high-tech wonders of today, and writing in wonder fully engaging and clear prose, Arthur takes us on a mind-opening journey that will change the way we think about technology and how it structures our lives. (shrink)
Technology, in its current usage, can most simply be understood to have three components: artifacts, practices, and knowledge. Artifacts are the material objects that exist in the world. Practices are the methods and techniques used to interact with artifacts and knowledge represents the underlying theoretical and conceptual paradigms that influence technology in different cultural contexts. Using these components as the framework, this four volume major work traces the intellectual, scholarly, and public evolution of technology studies and ultimately (...) questions whether technologies are truly autonomous within the societies they inhabit and whether or not technological changes drive social changes. Rayvon David Fouché presents the evolving conceptualizations of technology to understand the ways in which technology has shaped global society. Technology Studies is part of the ‘Key Issues for the 21st Century’ series published by SAGE which brings together collections on those critical issues that will shape our future. This four-volume set covers: Volume 1: Conceptualizing Technology Volume 2: Theorizing Technological Change Volume 3: Politics of Technology Volume 4: Technology and Culture. (shrink)
Knowledge Societies offers both a critical examination of existing social theory, and a new synthesis of social theory with the actual study of knowledge relations in advanced economies. Some of the elements explored are scientization: the penetration not only of production but of most social action by scientific knowledge; the transformation of access to knowledge through higher education; the growth of experts (managers, accountants, advisors, and counselors) and of corresponding institutions based on the deployment of specialized knowledge; and a shift (...) in the nature of societal conflict from struggles about income and property to claims and conflicts about generalized human needs. Nico Stehr's argument amply demonstrates not only that all social theories now need to take into account the changing nature of social relations around knowledge, but also the parameters within which this analysis should take place. This book is essential reading for all those interested in social theory, sociology of knowledge and science, and the general issue of knowledge in the late 20th century. (shrink)
Medical technology assessment deals with the evaluation of novel or existing health care procedures. This paper addresses the interdependence between factual and normative issues, using the controversies about acceptability and desirability of reduced-size liver transplantations with living donors as example.