Download Constructing Risk and Safety in Technological Practice by Boel Berner, Jane Summerton PDF

By Boel Berner, Jane Summerton

Glossy technological platforms entail dangers and uncertainties of hitherto unknown dimensions. This e-book discusses the development of possibility and security inside a number of empirical contexts the place applied sciences and their probability are debated and dealt with via members, teams or agencies. With contributions from top students from Europe and the us, it provides unique theoretical discussions, associated with targeted empirical case stories.

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Additional resources for Constructing Risk and Safety in Technological Practice (Routledge Advances in Sociology, 4)

Example text

Dekker discusses the accounts given by official investigating commissions in the wake of another, less publicized airline accident, namely a 1995 crash in Cali, Columbia, that resulted in the deaths of all on board the flight. Dekker’s story provides a detailed and incisive account of the tendency of investigators to confuse their own reality with the crew’s situation at the time of the accident. In these official accounts, the crew’s actions are removed from the context in which they are embedded and are ascribed with meaning in relation to after-the-fact-worlds.

Technologies of knowledge, including both the epidemiological surveys of injuries in elderly people and RCTs designed to test the effectiveness of interventions, shape particular events (such as hip fractures in residential homes) as preventable and therefore (eventually) non-accidental. Like cycle helmets and child-resistant containers, the soft hip protector pad ought to be irresistible as a safety intervention. Technology and resistance However, embedding technology in practice is more troublesome, and it is perhaps only once such artifacts have become taken for granted that they appear as self-evidently rational choices.

Educational interventions or artifacts designed to reduce risk can be tested to see if they do indeed reduce the number of accidental injuries. In accident research, the body of evidence from experimental studies is growing, and there have been calls for increasing the number of interventions that are “tested” in this way for their potential in reducing injuries. One example of an experiment on injury research and the fate of it in practice will perhaps illustrate both the reification of accident risks in epidemiology and the potential for resistance.

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