In scholarly debates, as well as in everyday parlance, we tend to pull science and technology apart: science gives us theory, and technology applies it. In practice, however, science and technologies are highly intertwined. In Techno-Scientific Practices: An Informational Approach, Federica Russo looks at the practice of science and elucidates the role of technologies and instruments in the process of knowledge production. In this exercise, it becomes evident that technologies cannot be analyzed on their own, but always in relation to epistemic agents. Thus, Techno-Scientific Practices emphasizes the importance of analyzing the process of knowledge production in techno-scientific contexts, in which there is a triad of relations to look at: us, the instruments, and the world. The book thus builds bridges between the philosophy of science, philosophy of technology, and science and technology studies in an unprecedent way.
Federica Russo is a philosopher of science, technology, and information based at the University of Amsterdam. Her current research concerns epistemological, methodological, and normative aspects as they arise in the biomedical and social sciences, and in highly technologized scientific contexts. Russo is the author of Evaluating Evidence of Mechanisms in Medicine: Principles and Procedures, Causality: Philosophical Theory Meets Scientific Practice (2014), and Causality and Causal Modelling in the Social Sciences: Measuring Variations (2009). She published numerous articles in international journals and spanning various themes, such as causation and causal modelling, explanation, evidence, and technology. Russo edited several books and special issues, including Causality in the Sciences (2011) and Critical Data Studies (2016).
List of abbreviations
1. Whence Philosophy of Techno-Science?
PART 1: TOWARDS A PHILOSOPHY OF TECHNO-SCIENCE22
2. Philosophy of Science or Philosophy of Technology
3. Techno-scientific practices: theoretical framework and selected episodes
4. Two tools from the Philosophy of Information
PART 2: THE EPISTEMOLOGY OF TECHNO-SCIENTIFIC PRACTICES
5. Modeling and validation in techno-scientific practices
6. The informational content of evidence
7. Establishing the truth of techno-scientific claims
8. Techno-scientific knowledge and the role of instruments
9. Poiêsis: how human and artificial epistemic agents co-produce knowledge
PART 3: THE ONTOEPISTEMOLOGY OF TECHNO-SCIENTIFIC PRACTICES
10. Deriving ontology from epistemology
11. The prospects of process-based ontologies
12. Causality as information transmission
13. Wither Philosophy of Techno-Science?
About the author
In Techno-Scientific Practices, Russo proves herself to be a masterful bridge-builder. She connects an astonishing range of fields without ever losing sight of her central project: to account for knowledge production by human and artificial epistemic agents. She is absolutely right that it takes a lot to understand techno-scientific practices, but it is remarkable how much understanding can already be gained just by reading this book.
A truly groundbreaking critical book-length study which argues with analytical zeal for a novel epistemological and ontological lens for technology. This book consolidates Russo’s important work as a leading scholar in the philosophy of technoscience in an innovative and pioneering way. It is a successful demonstration of what bringing together philosophy of technology, philosophy of science in practice, and science and technology studies can achieve. A must read for any scholar in ANY of these disciplines. Simply sensational.