Sociocybernetic Understandings of the Human Condition

Monday, 11 July 2016: 16:00-17:30
Location: Hörsaal 15 (Juridicum)
RC51 Sociocybernetics (host committee)

Language: English

Talcott Parsons was perhaps the first well-known social theorist who incorporated concepts from cybernetics and systems theory in his work. These concepts remained central in his thinking up to the time of his final meditations on “the human condition”. By this term, I believe Parsons meant a general and profound concern with understanding what it is to be human. 
This session invites contributions which address aspects of Parsons’ concerns as they present themselves in the current and emerging global world, with its major issues of ecological crisis, conflict and its consequences, global economic instability and insecurity, and exploitation and inequality. In contemporary sociology, Parsons is but one example out of many theorists who have used concepts from sociocybernetics in their work. Others include Niklas Luhmann, Walter Buckley, Gordon Pask, Felix Geyer and Bernd Hornung. 
Contributors should feel free to draw from theories of their personal preference, indeed, to present their own theoretical contributions. They might wish to compare and contrast particular alternatives. Questions addressed might include:

  • What can sociocybernetics tell us about the human condition?
  • How is that condition being affected by contemporary changes? 
  • How relevant and useful are the grand theories of Parsons, Luhmann and others to issues in the contemporary world?

Contributions which present relevant empirical findings using sociocybernetics concepts are particularly welcome.

Session Organizer:
Bernard SCOTT, Centre for Sociocybernetics Studies, United Kingdom
Bernard SCOTT, International Center for Sociocybernetic Studies, Germany
Sociocybernetic Reflections on the Human Condition
Bernard SCOTT, International Center for Sociocybernetic Studies, Germany
On (Socio-) Semio- Cybernetics of Life
Helmut K. LOECKENHOFF, -, Germany
The Technological and the Human in Contemporary Society: Artifacts, Devices and Representations
Jorge CARDIEL, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico
Between Competencies and Bildung in the Digital Medium Environment
Jesper TÆKKE, Aarhus University, Denmark; Michael PAULSEN, Aalborg University, Denmark
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