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Controlling technology: should we rely on the marketplace?

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1 Author(s)
N. Balabanian ; 6232 NW 34th Drive, Gainesville, FL, USA

If the direction of technological development is socially determined, as the author asserts, what means for controlling technology are available, and how is such control to be exercised? The author debunks the common perception and ideologically held view that technology is controlled by the market. He refers to a proposal by P. Hawken (1993) for a possible way of “fixing the market” so that it might indeed play this role. Finally, the author discusses the possibility of the engineering profession itself playing a much stronger role in controlling technology. Perhaps there are other mechanisms as well for carrying out this function of controlling technology: government laws and regulations, on the one hand, and social activism in protecting the environment, protecting workers' rights, and in strengthening civil society

Published in:

IEEE Technology and Society Magazine  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 2 )