In addition to synthesizing primary and secondary historical texts, these are analyzed by placing Joel Olson’s political theory of race, Mark Neocleous critical theory of police, and Loïc Wacquant’s analysis of the hyperghetto in conversation.
This research informs a developing book manuscript.
Drawing from political theory, science and technology studies (STS), critical race theory, new institutionalism, and cultural studies, this interdisciplinary study began in 2012 and has informed a number of publications in sociology, American studies, media studies, and political theory.
Initially reported in my doctoral dissertation and developed through ongoing research and analysis, this study will culminate with a book manuscript.
Critical Technology Studies (CTS) is an area in technology studies that coheres around four key elements:
In 2014, the panel “Minority Report: The Fall and Rise of Critical Technology Studies” was co-convened and co-chaired by Gretchen Gano and me. Papers were presented by Leon Angelo Morenas (School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi, India), David Reinecke and Janet Vertesi (Princeton University, US), Thomas Lemke (Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany), and Taylor Dotson and Ben Brucato (then of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, US).
The conference paper co-authored by Taylor Dotson and me has been updated and expanded, and is currently under review at a journal.
This was a joint project with economist Ken Simons and management scholar Susan Sanderson, as part of the Translational Thrust in the Commercialization Cluster of the NSF- and NYSERDA-funded Smart Lighting Engineering Research Center.
This project discovered ways that socio-technical obduracy channeled and limited SSL development and sought to find which disruptions to the lighting industry that were caused by SSL signal near-term opportunities for SSL technologies to develop.
Specifically, we found that obdurate technologies and infrastructures limited early market success. Edison bases and AC wiring channeled research and development toward replacement technologies and away from novel applications. Lighting designers experienced trouble integrating with existing or new controls and other elements of lighting system. A wide array of new SSL products tested the cognitive limits of designers and organizational limits of standards boards. Early product offerings failed to meet designer and user expectations in color rendering and reliability, and this generated some lasting prejudice against the technology. New industry actors were perceived as not possessing sufficient understanding of lighting.
Resistance to change channeled the development of SSL toward replacement. While this allowed SSL to demonstrate viability, it undercut unique capabilities of SSL. Moreover, stability in manufacturing and specification presented barriers to development. Established and powerful lighting firms, economies of scale in production, and prior expertise favor replacement technology over radical technologies (i.e. new form factors, smart lighting).