Technology Assessment and Normativity
Technology Assessment always strived to minimize negative and to promote positive consequences from technology implementation. But what is to be called a positive or negative consequence, and for whom? How can this be established, following which criteria? How can TA deal with normative claims from those who commission a TA study, or from those it is directed at, without jeopardizing its neutrality? Finally, one may ask what the normative framework TA itself operates within is like. After all, there are a number of normative concepts important for TA, such as the common good, sustainability or, more recently, Responsible Research and Innovation. Furthermore, societal norms that appear self-evident, institutional norms or even personal value orientations of practitioners might influence TA. TAN will shed a light on how TA deals with norms, both inherent or imposed from outside, on the basis of an analysis of concrete case studies. In addition, it will have a look at the practice in other TA institutions across Europe. The aim is to contribute to a more reflective way of dealing with normative claims and requirements in TA.
Short title:
TA and normativity
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Project leader:
Institute of Technology Assessment (ITA)