Lecture with Professor Sheila Jasanoff, Harvard University
Cosmopolitan Knowledge for an Uncertain World
by Pforzheimer Professor Sheila Jasanoff, Harvard University
Why is it easier to persuade people that a particular Danish restaurant deserves the accolade “best in the world” than that the IPCC’s consensus on climate change is the best that environmental science can offer? In this talk, I turn for explanations to the complex relations among scientific knowledge, evidence, and persuasion in the public sphere. Drawing on decades of comparative research, I identify the challenges faced by institutions that seek to bridge uncertainty across disparate political cultures. I argue that we need to retheorize the constitutional position of science in the contemporary global order in order to build the kind of cosmopolitan knowledge that can resist global skepticism and distrust.
Sheila Jasanoff is Pforzheimer Professor of Science and Technology Studies at the Harvard Kennedy School. A pioneer in her field, she has authored more than 100 articles and chapters and is author or editor of a dozen books, including Controlling Chemicals, The Fifth Branch, Science at the Bar, and Designs on Nature. Her work explores the role of science and technology in the law, politics, and policy of modern democracies, with particular attention to the nature of public reason.
Arranged by IOA in conjunction with the CBS Public-Private Platform
The Department of Organization (IOA) will host a Public Lecture series at CBS on the theme of 'Organizing Uncertainty' during the academic year 2010-2012. The aim of the series is to bring to the School internationally renowned scholars whose work has had a distinctive impact on the social and human sciences in general, and the study of various aspects of contemporary organizational life in particular.