The new edition of the International Journal of Emerging Techonologies and Society (iJETS) takes a comparative perspective on public engagement with emerging technologies on an international level. The special issue was edited by IÖW-experts Gerd Scholl, Ulrich Petschow and Jan-Peter Ferdinand. They say that the interrelation between technological path creation and its complex societal aspects is as close as never before. This has led to a significant renaissance in participatory and deliberatively motivated engagement activities, especially regarding nanotechnologies. The papers of this special issue display a wide range of participation cultures and institutional settings of engagement. They elaborate on the performance of deliberative dialogues, methodological aspects of engagement, and their relation to (political) decision-making contexts.
Finding the Citizens’ Perspective
The contributions report on national experiences from the Netherlands, Germany and the United States. They focus on different ways of ‘designing’ participatory governance of emerging technologies and take a citizens’ perspective on the value of structured deliberations. They reveal that the discussions about converging technologies are closely related to further developments in nanotechnologies in combination with a new stream of scientific and technological advances. Although the quantity and quality of communication over emerging technologies between science and the public has increased over the past years, the articles indicate that the relevant social systems may still be too isolated. However, the ongoing discourses at the intersection of science and society provide conceptual orientations for future discussions about a responsible shaping of technological innovations.
Free Peer-reviewed Papers for Download
The peer-reviewed International Journal of Emerging Technologies and Society is a multi-disciplinary journal, focusing on the complex relationship between science and technology and their wider socio-cultural contexts. It is a web-only publication and all papers are free for download at: http://www.swinburne.edu.au/hosting/ijets/ijets/index.html