The Odyssey of techno-scientific literacies

Published in Postdigital Science and Education (2021) 3:520–545. Download link below:

The Odyssey of techno-scientific literacies

A current pandemic which has pushed much work online has revealed a lack of literacies in information security, surveillance capitalism, and the unresolved problems of algorithms and control (e.g. Zuboff, Berners-Lee). Yet there is a decades-old tradition of pedagogies that address the complex interactions of the interdisciplinary techno-scientific world (Morin, G. Bateson, Rheingold, Dewey, Freire, Cooper) and the need for ethical approaches (Quéau, Markauskaite and Goodyear, Haidt, Gardner). Some of them emerged from the field of cybernetics (Morin, N. Bateson). Recent events show the need for further popularization of digital literacy, interdisciplinary approaches, intellectual and creative rigor, questions of service and liberty, and dialogue on what constitutes ‘good’ professional praxis. This paper considers the always unfinished work of pedagogy to ‘rise up’ above names – here, of humanist techno-science – to consider what belonging together means. Through a largely hermeneutic approach, the problem of the techno-scientific and its history in cybernetics is re-membered in such a way as to remind us of features of our shared creative Odyssey towards ‘something of greater significance’ (Dewey). And to show that uncritically downloading the latest app or giving up on the question of taking professional care is for the Lotus-eaters.

nb. the article does not cover the design decisions I made for the courses I am teaching this year, partially covered here and here.

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