WT15 – The management of scientific and technical choices
City : FR - Paris
Scientific and technical developments are certainly indebted to their autonomous dynamics, in which the actual progress of science generates new questions to elucidate and in which progress in techniques, methods and instruments opens up new fields of discovery and innovation. But they are also increasingly indebted to political, economic and social processes. The political processes are especially obvious in the case of the West and of China: the former hopes to stay ahead and maintain its differential in living standards and its mobilisation of global natural resources while maintaining scientific and technical supremacy; the latter is motivated by a fierce desire to gain back its standing, prestige and power in the concert of nations.
There are also economic determinants, as a growing share of scientific research and technological innovation is driven by businesses and guided by their interests. And, finally, there are social determinants, for example because the growing imbalance in the relationship between humanity and the biosphere is urgently imposing radical transformations in the mode of production and consumption. The scientific and technical choices are thus, in every sense of the term, major political choices: those that involve life and the future of societies. Democratic ideals would thus have it that these choices be subject, above all else, to a vast civic debate. Yet, most of the time, it’s these that most completely slip from citizens, whatever the political regime formally in place. They slip away either because the scientific and technical issues are judged out of reach of the understanding of ordinary citizens due to their complexity and their technical nature, or because they are made in bodies, especially in the « big companies », and levels - « the global level » - that radically slip from the traditional political arena, which is still mostly that of States.
The workshop will have to analyse the way in which these choices are made in China and in Europe as well as the implications of this method of choice. It will also have to explore the methods for a new contract between sciences and society.
DE LA RUPELLE Maëlys
GOU Hua (苟骅)
VAN DER ZEE Frans
ZHANG Zhilin (张志林)
ZHAO Jun (赵君)
Prime movers : CALAME Matthieu, NEUBAUER Claudia, YAN Guangmei (颜光美)
Organisers : NEUBAUER Claudia
Moderators : FAROULT Elie, NEUBAUER Claudia
Reports : GAUDIN Thierry
Interpreters : DING Xiaohuan, LIN Kevin, TIAN Yajing
Logistical support : AFFAIRES PUBLIQUES, CLEP Bénédicte
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