The following preliminary announcement will be replaced by a revised Call for Papers in the summer of 2016. At that point, plenary speakers and a program committee wil be announced. In the meantime, send inquiries to spt2017 or contact Sabine Ammon or Alfred Nordmann.
When we talk and think about technology, we are talking about ars and techne, artefacts and socio-technical systems – and always about putting things together, co-ordinating people and things. Seeking to understand, interpret, and knowingly inhabit the human-built world, we explore what works together, how to construct, engineer, compose, grow, plan, assemble, or design in appropriate, fitting, sustainable, and sociable ways.
These are questions of grammar: How do things work together in the motor of a car, in a public square, in a soap opera, in the painting of a historic scene, in a deliberative process? What are the principles of composition in a musical score or a computer program? How closely are things related in an ‘Internet of Things’? What sustains the operation of a concrete machine? Who acts when a law is enforced, a plan realized, a code compiled, a script executed? How do users become designers, how do scientists become engineers, how do artefacts become moral agents?
Such examinations of the grammar of things implicate epistemology, social imaginaries, and design ethics. They provoke analysis from the various traditions in philosophy of technology and seek to draw on contributions from history of technology, cultural studies, design theory, anthropology, art history, cognitive psychology, computer science, engineering education and other fields.
Topics of discussion include, but are not limited to:
- technological arrangements of people and things
- design as experimental ethics
- genres of art and technology and how they talk to each other
- right and wrongs in working knowledge
- design theory and standards of appropriateness
- manuals of composition and craft learning by example
- reasoning and acting with things
- logics and heuristics of design
- notations, specifications, standards and technosocial norms
- local constellations and global forces
- ethics, politics, and the governance of technosocial systems
By way of an excursion and dedicated sessions the conference will also draw on its immediate surroundings and explore their relevance for the philosophy and history of technology:
- making things work together on the page – the printing press, the book, and the Kulturtechnik of reading
- total design – from art nouveau to standardization in architecture
In addition to contributions that specifically address the call for papers, papers on all aspects of philosophy and technology will be considered.