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Expertise, Skepticism and Cynicism: Lessons from Science & Technology Studies

Lynch, Michael (2007) Expertise, Skepticism and Cynicism: Lessons from Science & Technology Studies. Spontaneous Generations: A Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science, 1 (1). pp. 17-24. ISSN 1913 0465

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Abstract

The topic of expertise has become especially lively in recent years in academic discussions and debates about the politics of science. It is easy to understand why the topic holds such strong interest in Science & Technology Studies (STS) and related fields. There are at least two basic reasons for such interest. One is that experts are undoubtedly important in modern societies, and the other is that trends in STS research tend to be critical of the cognitive authority associated with the public role of the expert. Putting the two together, STS researchers often align themselves with environmentalist and other movements that question the impartiality of experts and seek to democratize decisions about science and technology. Though such alignment is in many respects laudable, it can also be a source of confusion and misplaced political criticism. Toward the end of this brief synopsis of current STS research and debates on the topic of expertise, I will suggest an alternative agenda for engaging the politics of science and technology.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Lynch, Michael
Keywords: expertise, science and technology studies, politics,
Subjects: General Issues > Science and Society
General Issues > Science and Policy
Specific Sciences > Sociology
Depositing User: Jessie Hall
Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2018 17:49
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2018 17:49
Item ID: 15456
Journal or Publication Title: Spontaneous Generations: A Journal for the History and Philosophy of Science
Publisher: The University of Toronto
Official URL: https://spontaneousgenerations.library.utoronto.ca...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.4245/sponge.v1i1.2968
Subjects: General Issues > Science and Society
General Issues > Science and Policy
Specific Sciences > Sociology
Date: 8 December 2007
Page Range: pp. 17-24
Volume: 1
Number: 1
ISSN: 1913 0465
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15456

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