Can the technological mediation approach improve technology assessment? A critical view from ‘within’

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Abstract

The technological mediation approach aspires to complement current Technology Assessment (TA) practices. It aims to do so by addressing ethical concerns from ‘within’ human-technology relations leading to ethical Constructive Technology Assessment (eCTA), as articulated by Kiran, Asle H., Nelly Oudshoorn, and Peter-Paul Verbeek in their 2015 article. In this paper, we problematize this ambition. Firstly, we situate the technological mediation approach in the history of TA. Secondly, as a study into the normativity from ‘within’ human-technology relations, we reveal the phenomenological and existential origins of Verbeek's technological mediation approach. Thirdly, we show that there are two possible readings of this approach: a strong and a weak one. The weak reading can augment current TA practices but is eventually uncommitted to the idea of technological mediation. The strong reading defines a wholly new scope for our engagement with (emerging) technologies but is incompatible with existing TA approaches
LanguageEnglish
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of responsible innovation
DOIs
StateE-pub ahead of print - 16 Jul 2018

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Technology assessment
Mediation
Normativity
Emerging technologies
Constructive technology assessment

Keywords

  • Technology assessment
  • Ethics
  • Technological mediation
  • Normativity
  • Postphenomenology

Cite this

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title = "Can the technological mediation approach improve technology assessment? A critical view from ‘within’",
abstract = "The technological mediation approach aspires to complement current Technology Assessment (TA) practices. It aims to do so by addressing ethical concerns from ‘within’ human-technology relations leading to ethical Constructive Technology Assessment (eCTA), as articulated by Kiran, Asle H., Nelly Oudshoorn, and Peter-Paul Verbeek in their 2015 article. In this paper, we problematize this ambition. Firstly, we situate the technological mediation approach in the history of TA. Secondly, as a study into the normativity from ‘within’ human-technology relations, we reveal the phenomenological and existential origins of Verbeek's technological mediation approach. Thirdly, we show that there are two possible readings of this approach: a strong and a weak one. The weak reading can augment current TA practices but is eventually uncommitted to the idea of technological mediation. The strong reading defines a wholly new scope for our engagement with (emerging) technologies but is incompatible with existing TA approaches",
keywords = "Technology assessment, Ethics, Technological mediation, Normativity, Postphenomenology",
author = "{de Boer}, {Sebastiaan Oege Mathijs} and Hoek, {Jonne Corneille Henri Roland} and Olga Kudina",
year = "2018",
month = "7",
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doi = "10.1080/23299460.2018.1495029",
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journal = "Journal of responsible innovation",
issn = "2329-9460",
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AB - The technological mediation approach aspires to complement current Technology Assessment (TA) practices. It aims to do so by addressing ethical concerns from ‘within’ human-technology relations leading to ethical Constructive Technology Assessment (eCTA), as articulated by Kiran, Asle H., Nelly Oudshoorn, and Peter-Paul Verbeek in their 2015 article. In this paper, we problematize this ambition. Firstly, we situate the technological mediation approach in the history of TA. Secondly, as a study into the normativity from ‘within’ human-technology relations, we reveal the phenomenological and existential origins of Verbeek's technological mediation approach. Thirdly, we show that there are two possible readings of this approach: a strong and a weak one. The weak reading can augment current TA practices but is eventually uncommitted to the idea of technological mediation. The strong reading defines a wholly new scope for our engagement with (emerging) technologies but is incompatible with existing TA approaches

KW - Technology assessment

KW - Ethics

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KW - Normativity

KW - Postphenomenology

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