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Community and Identity in Contemporary Technosciences

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  • Open Access
  • © 2021

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  • Reinvigorates the concept of scientific community
  • Delineates ongoing changes across a range of epistemic cultures
  • Elaborates on social, cultural and political aspects of contemporary technoscience
  • Traces historical influences on technoscience, including in the European context
  • Provides new thinking on scientific identity formation

Part of the book series: Sociology of the Sciences Yearbook (SOSC, volume 31)

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About this book

This open access edited book provides new thinking on scientific identity formation. It thoroughly interrogates the concepts of community and identity, including both historical and contemporaneous analyses of several scientific fields. Chapters examine whether, and how, today’s scientific identities and communities are subject to fundamental changes, reacting to tangible shifts in research funding as well as more intangible transformations in our society’s understanding and expectations of technoscience. In so doing, this book reinvigorates the concept of scientific community.

Readers will discover empirical analyses of newly emerging fields such as synthetic biology, systems biology and nanotechnology, and accounts of the evolution of theoretical conceptions of scientific identity and community. With inspiring examples of technoscientific identity work and community constellations, along with thought-provoking hypotheses and discussion, the work has a broad appeal. Those involved in science governance will benefit particularly from this book, and it has much to offer those in scholarly fields including sociology of science, science studies, philosophy of science and history of science, as well as teachers of science and scientists themselves.

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Table of contents (14 chapters)

Editors and Affiliations

  • Institute of Technology Assessment, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna, Austria

    Karen Kastenhofer

  • Department of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology, University of Exeter, Exeter, UK

    Susan Molyneux-Hodgson

About the editors

Karen Kastenhofer holds a PhD in biology and has been working in the field of social studies of science for two decades. She specializes in the reconstruction of epistemic cultures, the convergence of science and technology within the newly emerging technosciences and socio-political ramifications thereof. For the past ten years she has been tracing the emergence of systems biology as a potentially new epistemic culture and community in various national contexts. She is currently based at the Austrian Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Technology Assessment and teaches at the University of Vienna.

Susan Molyneux-Hodgson FRSA is a Professor of Sociology at University of Exeter and currently the Associate Dean for Research. She has been working in the field of social studies of science for over twenty years and specialises in the sociological analysis of scientific knowledge production, science-society relations and interdisciplinary research. For thepast ten years she has been tracing the emergence of synthetic biology as a potentially new field of scientific practice. She has begun to study the work of nuclear-oriented research communities, such as materials science and radioecology. Her research projects have been supported by multiple UK Research Councils, the EU and by industry.

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