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Professor Larry Busch, CESAGen - Measuring Up: How Standards Shape Our Lives

Date: 21 October 2008 Time: 16.15-18.00, Bowland North SR20

Although generally ignored by social scientists, standards (for both people and things) are a commonplace in contemporary societies. However, their very taken-for-granted character makes them rarely the subject of discussion outside technical communities. In this talk I will examine what standards are, how they differ from and are similar to norms and laws, and how standards shape virtually all human endeavours. I will also pose two theses about standards, namely (1) that with the rise of modern science came a move toward using standards to standardize, and (2) that somewhat more recently a countertrend emerged of using standards to differentiate. The social and ethical consequences of these two theses will be explored.


Who can attend: Anyone


Further information

Organising departments and research centres: ESRC Centre for Economic and Social Aspects of Genomics (CESAGen), Sociology

Keywords: Science and technology, Science and technology studies, Sociology, Technology


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Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Lancaster University
Lancaster LA1 4YD
United Kingdom

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