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NATS 1760- WHY IS THINKING ABOUT SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY SO HARD?.docx

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Department
Natural Science
Course
NATS 1760
Professor
Darrin Durant
Semester
Fall

Description
SC NATS 1760 DARRIN DURANT/ JAMES ELWICK Monday, September 17, 2012 Why is Thinking About Science & Technology So Hard? Pg. 1-21  Scientism is the notion that there is an inherent divide between facts and values  Facts are superior to values in terms of credibility and cognitive authority – ONLY trained scientists can appropriately participate in decision-making  Social impacts and moral concerns are considered to be based on value judgments= less credible  e.g. health and safety issues (fetal research, engineered food)  We accept that science and scientists are the best possibly arbiters of controversy leaving out the politics and opinions of unbiased truth  Technological progressivism is the idea in the roots of Enlightenment when progress meant good and technology came to be viewed as a tool in all progressive projects  e.g. airplane technology- replacing wood with metal  “technological utopianism”  With industrialization on the rise, we must rely on others  trust experts who specialize in a certain division of labour  experts’s assessments and decisions reflect their social location, and not necessarily the interests and concerns of non-expert citizens who are affected by their judgment  Epidemiologists study the collection of individuals who are categorized in terms of their exposure to some disease agent or the presence/absence of the disease  determined by “convenience, availability of data rather than biological models”  leukemia case with toxic water in Woburn  radioactive contamination on farms in England  2,4,5-T herbicide  Scientists over generalize with a supposed universal ideas and principles  not practical to place trust exclusively in expert knowledge  Lay people – citizens with a vested interest in research  root “bad science”  can challenge the appropriateness of expert accepted standers of proof when human healthy is at risk  can provide access to important data  Treatment activists have an increasingly important role in discussion about clinical trial design  AIDS & HIV case  problematic to divide the technical ( research methods) from the nontechnical (ethics)  Endometriosis Associati
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