By Wiebe E. Bijker, Thomas P. Hughes, Trevor Pinch, Deborah G. Douglas

ISBN-10: 0262301628

ISBN-13: 9780262301626

ISBN-10: 0262517604

ISBN-13: 9780262517607

This pioneering booklet, first released in 1987, introduced the recent box of social experiences of know-how. It brought a style of inquiry--social building of expertise, or SCOT--that turned a key a part of the broader self-discipline of technology and expertise stories. The e-book helped the MIT Press form its STS checklist and encouraged the interior expertise sequence. The 13 essays within the ebook inform tales approximately such diversified applied sciences as thirteenth-century galleys, eighteenth-century cooking stoves, and twentieth-century missile structures. Taken jointly, they verify the fruitfulness of an method of the learn of know-how that provides equivalent weight to technical, social, financial, and political questions, and so they reveal the illuminating results of the mixing of empirics and conception. The techniques in this volume--collectively referred to as SCOT (after the volume's identify) have for the reason that broadened their scope, and twenty-five years after the ebook of this e-book, it is hard to think about a expertise that has now not been studied from a SCOT point of view and very unlikely to consider a know-how that can't be studied that way.

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Extra info for The Social construction of technological systems : new directions in the sociology and history of technology

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But radical inventions are often the geneses of new systems. Dynamic imbalance and reverse salients in systems are comparable concepts found in the Callon and the Hughes essays. The use of the concept follows from conceiving of technology as a growing system or network. Because actors or components in a system are functionally related, changes in one or more cause imbalances or reverse salients in the advancing system front until the other components cascade and adjust to achieve an optimal interaction.

From his essay the reader may conclude that Hughes, as historian, would prefer to avoid the middle-level abstractions, such as science and technology, and write of particular actors doing particular things. His frequent use of case histories gives evidence of this. Michel Callon proposes in his essay that the question of who is a scientist and who is a technologist is negotiable according to circumstances. —Callon takes a different tack from Hughes, who prefers specific cases or examples in lieu of middle-level categories.

In addition to the seamless web, systems, actors, networks, closure, stabilization, and social construction, they explore conservative and radical change, balances and imbalances in evolving technological systems, translation, heterogeneity, and research sites. With regard to conservative and radical change, Pinch, Bijker, and Hughes note that inclusion in a group, organization, or bureaucracy dampens the originality of inventors and innovators (Bijker, this volume). High inclusion brings mission orientation or commitment to incremental improvements in the evolving technological system with which the group, organization, or bureaucracy has identified.

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The Social construction of technological systems : new directions in the sociology and history of technology by Wiebe E. Bijker, Thomas P. Hughes, Trevor Pinch, Deborah G. Douglas


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