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Technopathogenology

Technology and Non-Evident Risk – A Contribution to Prevention

Guillermo Miguel Eguiazu and Alberto Motta

This book deals with the prevention of potential non-evident risks on human health associated with technology which encloses the general knowledge of developing processes used to achieve either goods or services. The voids in technological knowledge used in the development of new technologies are responsible for hidden defects in the same. The authors suggest that hidden defects in technologies are accountable for hazards in generations of environmental factors that they call technopathogens. These factors can cause adverse effects to human health which are expressed not immediately but over years or even generations. This phenomenon is defined as technopathogeny. Since technopathogeny cannot be framed within existing disciplines related to the phenomenon such as risk assessment, risk management, technology assessment, technological genesis, environmental impact assessment, life cycle assessment or ecology, the authors coin a new term for this specific discipline called Technopathogenology.

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Detailed Table of Contents 723

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Detailed Table of Contents Introduction............................................................................................. 15 CHAPTER I – Technopathogeny – The Phenomenon I. The discovery of a phenomenon still undescribed ...................... 19 II. Epistemological criteria for the creation of a science .................. 21 III. The epistemological group in Technopathogenology ................. 22 IV. The Phenomenon ......................................................................... 22 The Technopathogenic phenomenon: Its detection ............................................ 25 V. Technopathogeny and Technique ................................................ 26 VI. Characteristics of the human / human environment harmony ..... 29 1) Human environment .................................................................................... 29 2) Harmony ..................................................................................................... 30 3) Necessary .................................................................................................... 31 VII. Technology’s approach to maintain the balance ......................... 31 VIII. Technopathogeny: Analyzing its defining terms ......................... 33 Negative consequences to human health ............................................................ 34 Factors generated by Technique or Technopathogenous agents......................... 40 Technique .......................................................................................................... 42 Human environment ........................................................................................... 42 Error or flaw ....................................................................................................... 43 Immanent ........................................................................................................... 43 Hidden................................................................................................................ 44 IX. The increase in complexity of Technique comes along with the increase of risk ............................................................... 45 X. Technopathogeny: The first three approaches ............................. 84 XI. Technopathogeny: Its causes – the fourth approach .................... 84 XII. Attitudes regarding truth and its consequences on Technique ............................................. 87 Certainty ............................................................................................................ 87 Uncertainty......................................................................................................... 89 Doubt ................................................................................................................. 90 Opinion .............................................................................................................. 91 Ignorance ........................................................................................................... 92 Error ................................................................................................................... 94 Mendacity .......................................................................................................... 97 724 Accumulation of effects ..................................................................................... 98 XIII. The ethical attitude that causes the phenomenon: The fifth approach ..................................................................... 100 XIV. Flaws by action and flaws by omission ..................................... 103 XV. Vector system to exemplify the risks within Technique ........... 104 XVI. Conclusion ................................................................................. 113 CHAPTER II – Technopathogeny – Its disciplinary orphanage and a framing proposal I. Introduction ............................................................................... 115 II. The need of a new discipline: Basic concepts ........................... 117 III. A science with ups and downs or the disciplinary orphanage ... 118 IV. Hypotheses and theories that support the disciplinary...

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