Axis 1: Explore

Axis 1: Explore

Economic imbalance, ecological crisis, bioethical dilemmas and every other modern issue appear as knots of politic, science, moral and technique impossible to sort out.
In this context of growing hybridization, take an active part in public life is becoming more problematic.

The 1st axis, directed by Tommaso Venturini, deals with the exploration of knowledge in debate on the web and aims at sensibilizing the public to the evolution of professional and civic contexts. To be able to find their way in this uncertain universe, future citizens need tools to explore and visualize the complexity of public debates. The goal of controversy mapping is to contribute to the development of these tools through the creative use of digital technologies.

These discourses exploration and representation tools (network analysis, text mining, infovis) already exist for researchers. However their pedagogical use remains is still limited and requires an integration and standardisation work of the sequence of network analysis.

Three establishments from the consortium are currently experiencing with the pedagogy of controversy, where the principal topics deal with scientific, technologic, digital and environmental questions. Internationally, 19 establishments lead similar experimentations.

Pedagogical goals

The goals of axis 1 are as follow:

  • Understand how scientific knowledge is built and how it is updated in discourses (scientific literature, political debates, etc) and subject fought by the public, the scientists or the decision-makers;
  • Use digital methods of exploration of arguments, knowledge and available opinions.

To achieve this, students need to be able to:

  • Orient themselves in the complex universe of controversy;
  • Open the black box of science and technique and avoid naive positivism and cynical relativism;
  • Find the balance between the respect of the complexity and the readability.
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