Prometheus: Vol 36, No 4 (2020)

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Editorial
By Stuart MacDonald Our first paper in this issue comes from Gary Lea, writing about artificial intelligence. We have published other papers on this subject of late and several book reviews, but Lea’s paper is rather different. He argues that, far from being the definitive rational approach to doing things that many assume, artificial intelligence involves choices. As social scientists are generally well aware and as engineers often are not, choice is influenced by bias and involves risk. The game of chess is often presented as the stage for the contest of man against machine, but chess is actually far from the battle of logic and intelligence commonly imagined. Artificial intelligence is indeed a battleground, but of research groups, companies and countries struggling against each other. page: 321 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360401
Paper
By Gary R Lea The research and development of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies involve choices that extend well beyond the search for narrow engineering solutions to problems. The label ‘constructivism’ is used to capture this larger realm of social choice. Drawing on the history of AI, a distinction is made between limited artificial narrow intelligence (ANI) and artificial general intelligence (AGI). Both forms, the paper argues, carry risks. Following this history, the paper outlines how different approaches to rationality have led to different ‘tribes’ of AI. No universal model of rationality is available to AI engineers. Choice is everywhere. The paper then moves to an exploration of the links between AI and chess. It argues that chess, far from being an objective measure of rationality and intelligence, reveals the subjective biases and risks involved in the pursuit of AI. The paper moves on to provides examples of various unstable and potentially dangerous race heats taking place in AI, including those among various AI research groups (public and private), among corporations and among states. The final section draws together the various risks of AI. page: 322 - 346 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360402
Paper
By Pia Storvang, Anders Haug and Bang Nguyen This paper investigates how an organization can involve users in innovation processes. Based on three case studies and the literature on spaces, user-driven innovations and design management, the paper develops a framework that organizes different types of user involvement strategies. The framework aims to provide a rich understanding of how innovative spaces can be staged under different management strategies. To test the framework, nine SMEs from different Danish industries were selected. The findings show that the framework needs to be flexible in order to accommodate how users can be involved in different contexts and stages of the process. In addition, the study demonstrates various approaches to innovative spaces for involving users and their interests in the company. The framework includes a critique of the one-sided promotion of certain innovation paradigms in the literature. As demonstrated in this paper, different contexts require very different innovation approaches. page: 347 - 365 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360403
Paper
By David Noble, Michael B Charles and Robyn Keast This study suggests that a concierge service, provided by governments, can assist startups to gain streamlined access to the services, capabilities and capital required to bring innovation efficiently and cost-effectively to market. It analyses a range of concierge models in five separate jurisdictions to determine best practice. The paper develops a rationale and working definition for a concierge service that will assist public sector managers to help young high-growth SMEs and startups to navigate the increasingly complex innovation ecosystem.
page: 366 - 381 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360404
Review Essay
By Jeffrey White Readers of Prometheus with its focus on innovation enabling change – ‘open innovation’ – may be drawn to Luis Pereira’s newest book with Antonio Lopes for a number of reasons. For example, someone interested in machine ethics, and a policymaker interested in the potential for evolutionary game theory applied to large-scale social coordination problems modelled in computer simulations over generational timescales, may both find the text rewarding yet come to it from different perspectives. The former may be most interested in Pereira’s pioneering work in logic programming in the late 1970s and how this grounds his thinking about human morality now. page: 382 - 389 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360405
Book Review
By Nick Butler With considerable flair and lightness of touch, Dennis Tourish has written a devastating broadside against the business school, a scathing record of the missteps and misdeeds of management research from its inception to the present day. The book offers a multi-pronged attack on poor academic practices, covering everything from Frederick Taylor’s flagrant lies about scientific management to statistical jiggery-pokery in contemporary leadership theory. What’s more, it provides an object lesson in how we might create a better kind of business school, one in which we no longer churn out pointless papers in academic journals that no one ever reads. At its core, the book analyses why a great deal of management research is rubbish and what we can do about it – with the ultimate aim of bringing some ‘zest and purpose’ (p.234) into academic life. page: 390 - 392 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360406
Book Review
By Martin Peterson Some 20 years ago, the governor of Massachusetts agreed to make data summarizing hospital visits for every state employee available to academic researchers. To protect people’s privacy, the governor promised that the records would be anonymized before being released. All explicit patient identifiers were removed, including names, addresses and social security numbers. page: 393 - 395 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360407
Book Review
By Priyan Dias Carl Mitcham has worked for many years on bridging the gap between philosophy (his specialist discipline) and technology (the one with which he has been engaging). He is probably the most eminent and respected exponent of that relationship, having established his credentials through his seminal book Thinking through Technology: The Path between Engineering and Philosophy (Mitcham, 1994). The title of the book is interesting, given that it is engineering with which he is seeking a bridge. Twenty-five years later, with this latest compilation of essays, he feels that the bridge has yet to be built. page: 396 - 402 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360408
Book Review
By Mary Manjikian The greatest challenge in putting together any sort of resource on ethical cybersecurity policy is that it requires building a bridge between two disparate groups of analysts and readers. Social scientists and legal scholars, focused on such issues as regulation and accountability, often have little background in the technical aspects of cybersecurity. page: 403 - 405 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360409
Book Review
By Mona Roman This book provides a versatile account of smart city paradigm development. While it offers an overview of the smart city’s underlying smart technologies (internet of things, data science, blockchain and artificial intelligence), it also emphasizes human intelligence and participatory governance as key ingredients of modern smart cities. The editors, who have put together the work of 23 contributors in this volume, hale from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. page: 406 - 407 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360410
Book Review
By Darryl Cressman One of the challenges confronting philosophers of technology is conceptualizing the relationship between humans and technology without drawing a neat distinction between the two. Many philosophers do this by positing a variation of the argument that technological artifacts consist of two inseparable dimensions, a functional one and a hermeneutic one, both of which are necessary for a technology to ‘work’. Admittedly, recognizing this two-dimensional ontology is easy; taking the next step and theorizing this relationship is more difficult because it requires both a sensitivity for empirical research into the design and use of technologies and a conceptual vocabulary that accounts for the ways in which technologies are meaningful. page: 408 - 411 Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation Volume 36, Issue 4 SKU: 360411