Professor Charlie Thorpe has been busy writing. He has an article (co-authored with Jane Gregory of University College London) due to be published in September in Science as Culture. The title is “Producing the Post-Fordist Public: The Political Economy of Public Engagement in Science.” Thorpe and Gregory argue that projects in the UK to foster public participation with scientific and technological decision-making must be seen within the context of post-Fordist capitalism. These projects are part of the broader shaping of interactive and reflexive forms of consumerism and consumer citizenship under post-Fordism.
Thorpe is presenting a paper at the conference of the Science and Democracy Network, held in the UK at the end of June. His paper is titled “From Public Engagement to Democratic Planning.” The paper argues that a meaningful program for participatory democratic science policy must challenge capitalist relations of the ownership of technology and the marketization of science and technology.
Charlie Thorpe has also written a review essay, discussing a book on science under the Nazis and a study of Albert Einstein’s politics — forthcoming in the journal Metascience. In the essay, Thorpe draws on the sociological theory of Norbert Elias in order to suggest a new way of thinking about Einstein’s politics.