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Why Democracies Need Science


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Table of Contents


Part I: Introduction
Chapter 1: Science as a Moral Choice

Part II: Elective Modernism
Chapter 2: Choosing Science
Chapter 3: The Birds: Elective Modernism, Democracy and Science

Part III: Academic Context
Chapter 4: Elective Modernism in Context
Chapter 5: Institutional Innovations

Part IV: Manifesto
Conclusion: Elective Modernism and Democracy

References Cited

About the Author

Harry Collins is a Fellow of the British Academy, and Distinguished Research Professor in the School of Social Sciences at Cardiff University.
Robert Evans is Professor in Sociology at Cardiff University.


"Scientific and technological advances have a huge impact on our lives, yet science and society have an ambivalent relationship: science needs democracy to flourish but its techniques are beyond political accountability. In this thought-provoking book, Collins and Evans assert that "science gives substance to the way of being of democracy". Consequently, science is a key to achieving and safeguarding our democratic ideals."
-Barry Barish, Linde Professor of Physics, Emeritus, Caltech; PI and Director of LIGO, 1994-2005

"Free-market ideology threatens both science and democracy. Collins and Evans respond not with philosophical arguments but an appeal to common sense. They ask us first to see that we face a basic moral choice, and then to choose the values of modern science. A provocative and thoughtful book."
-Mark Brown, Professor of Government, California State University, Sacramento

"Should we only give credence to an expert in any given field, thereby discounting the view of non-specialists? Doing so would seem rather undemocratic. It would also appear to reduce the scope for holding experts accountable. [... Collins and Evans'] theory not only tries to explain how knowledge is acquired but also legitimises the contribution which non-practitioners can make to scientific practice."
-The Irish Times

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