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Science and technology studies

(scienceandtechnologystudies,scienceand technology studies,science andtechnology studies,science and technologystudies)

In academics, science studies is an umbrella term encompassing the disciplines known separately as history of science , sociology of science , philosophyof science and more rarely scientific method . Science studiesscholars also include anthropologists. The success of science at generating useful and reliable understandings about the worldhas attracted curiosity from diverse perspectives, including curiosities oriented toward culture, politics and epistemology . An overarching goal that applies to many science studies researchprojects is to learn how scientific understanding progresses.

Technology studies is a field that has mushroomed in recent decades. In addition to the disciplines mentionedabove, it attracts attention from economists (e.g. on costs of R&D), geographers (e.g. on division of labour over space ininnovation and use of technologies), and ethicists (bioethics) and legal studies (e.g. information technology law, internetregulation). There has emerged a very active field of "innovation studies" in which many of these disciplines cooperate. Thisfield covers not only invention and innovation, but also the diffusion, implementation, consumption, reinvention, andrepresentation of technologies. (Innovation studies also cover non-technological innovations, though there has been much lesseffort here.)

Technology studies deal with human products whose utility is a matter of whether or not they "work" in effectingtransformations of the material world. Science studies deal with knowledge claims, but these are often interpreted as claims totruth; many students of science studies have preferred to skate around the question of veracity (and some treat all scientificapproaches as being in effect of equal truth value), and say that science "works" to the extent that relevant communities believein its claims.

See also

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