Understanding ‘Anticipatory Governance’

12 Feb 2015
4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

470 Stephens Hall

Event Type

David Guston
Professor, School of Politics and Global Studies, Arizona State University

Anticipatory governance is ‘a broad-based capacity extended through society that can act on a variety of inputs to manage emerging knowledge-based technologies while such management is still possible’. It motivates activities designed to build capacities in foresight, engagement, and integration – as well as through their production ensemble. These capacities encourage and support the reflection of scientists, engineers, policy makers, and other publics on their roles in new technologies. This talk provides a conceptual overview of anticipatory governance, further explicating it through the research agenda of the Center for Nanotechnology in Society at ASU.  The presentation will also address a set of critiques found in the literature. These critiques involve skepticism of three proximities of anticipatory governance: to its object – nano and other emerging technologies – which is a relatively indistinct one; to the public, which remains almost utterly naïve toward emerging tech; and to technoscience itself, which allegedly renders anticipatory governance complicit in its hubris. The talk concludes that the changing venues and the amplification within them of the still, small voices of folks previously excluded from offering constructive visions of futures afforded by anticipatory governance may not be complete solutions to our woes in governing technology, but they certainly can contribute to bending the long arc of technoscience more toward humane ends.

This event is sponsored by CSTMS.
Additional sponsorship comes from:  Berkeley Program in Science and Technology Studies

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