On Science, Technology, and the Democratic and Participatory Order

Democracy and Participation: A Review of Existing Knowledge
By Dominique Pestré

This paper is a systematic presentation of the studies that have dealt with science, technology, and the participatory order, both today and in the past. It does not aim at exhaustivity, an impossible goal, but at showing what the main issues are in the field. It starts by defining what the specificity of the field might be, and then suggests four key theoretical (and normative) references. It analyzes empirical approaches that deal with the way civil society takes over the questions, and how institutions try to shape collective solutions. It concludes on the interpretations that have been given of this participatory and normative turn in the studies of science and technology in society.


  • science
  • technologies
  • participatory procedures
  • democracy
  • history
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