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Modeling Technoscience and Nanotechnology Assessment

Perspectives and Dilemmas

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Ewa Binczyk and Tomasz Stepien

This book is presented by two authors who worked in close cooperation. The first part is written by Ewa Bińczyk and discusses various postulates that have been formulated in response to the problem of the unwanted side-effects of the practical success of technoscience which derive from two theoretical perspectives: the study of risk and science and technology studies (STS), inspired by actor-network theory (ANT). In the second part of the book Tomasz Stępień analyses and characterizes the nano-domain as an example of the development of techno-sciences. Generally, in the case of nanotechnology this book calibrates reciprocally to each other the indeed familiar but also slightly different theoretical approaches established in the philosophy of science and technology.
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Foreword

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Extract

We present the book that was jointly prepared as a result of cooperation between two authors. The first part of the book, entitled “Caring about the future of the collective. Monitoring technoscience in the sociology of risk and science and technology studies” was written by Ewa Bińczyk – a philosopher of science from Nicolaus Copernicus University. Bińczyk discusses various postulates of a theoretical, social and political nature that have been formulated in response to the problem of the unwanted side-effects of the practical success of technoscience. They derive from two theoretical perspectives: the contemporary study of risk and science and technology studies (STS), inspired by what is called the actor-network theory (ANT).

She starts by asking about the very nature of modern science, commercialized and politicized in many aspects. In her part of the book Bińczyk builds the space for normative and institutional reactions to the problem of risk. We find there analyses of political and philosophical propositions, macro-ethical postulates, as well as concrete proposals for legal solutions and projects in the field of social policy and management. All of them are systematically presented, critically commented on and, in the last part of the book, reformulated in coherent a way as possible.

Bińczyk convinces us that we are faced with a particular conceptual revolution, taking place in front of our eyes. It establishes a new vocabulary for our thinking about politics, technology, responsibility and the civilizational role of technoscience. This conceptual revolution challenges...

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