TECHNOLOGY ASSESSMENT 1)4)5)
The evaluation of possible future effects of some new technology.
According to the UNESCO-UNEP Glossary it uses: "Methods and processes of projecting, evaluating and predicting possible short and long range physical, social, economic, and ecological benefits and costs, including negative side effects and impacts, of introducing a particular technology in general or for a given area of the environment" (1983, p.27).
Unfortunately, the growing number of catastrophes from technological origin shows that technology assessment is still much wanting. This is obviously because it is nearly always practiced from an ad hoc and partialized viewpoint.
Two important causes of such situation seem to be:
- Technology assessment cannot be partialized (or underconceptualized, in J. WARFIELD's terminology), if it is to be really reliable. Most recent disasters show that, in practice, dangerous or questionable technologies were only assessed by specialists, using narrow, short sighted and short term usefulness criteria (C. FRANÇOIS, 1989, p.1101-11).
- Technology assessment has a totally neglected the ethical aspects, and frequently the social ones. This is due to the presently overpowering (and sometimes downright cynical) utilitaristic bias in the dominant culture. culture. A result is that the possible problems, even when suspected, are frequently and artfully concealed.
In conclusion, technological assessment should be grounded on:
a) systemic concepts and methods to be used to globally evaluate modificiations to complex systems, and
b) a systemic ethics, concerned with present and future human rights and responsabilities as well as with ecological future.
- 1) General information
- 2) Methodology or model
- 3) Epistemology, ontology and semantics
- 4) Human sciences
- 5) Discipline oriented
To cite this page, please use the following information:
Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science (2020). Title of the entry. In Charles François (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics (2). Retrieved from www.systemspedia.org/[full/url]
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