Tokyo Workshop at RISTEX

Technology Assessment:

A Stable Solution or Only Relevant Under Pressure?

The 3rd International Workshop was held at RISTEX/JST  in Tokyo (Japan) with the topic “ Technology Assessment: A Stable Solution or Only Relevant Under Pressure?” (July 11, 2014)

One can observe that the concern for TA and TA-like activities has developed in waves depending on country-specific political circumstances, current frictions within the socio-technical system or resulting from catastrophes/accidents such as Chernobyl or Fukushima. The argument is that TA-like activities are a social response to technological challenges. Institutionalised or not, the capacity to handle technological challenges does imply the attitude to show alternatives in decision-making and to maintain the scientific capacity to reflect on several options.  Therefore, it appears relevant to understand the conditions that must be met to establish TA permanently.

The organizers of the workshop would like to invite researchers from Japan and Europe to reflect together on country-specific developments to identify the conditions that must be created to anchor TA in science, politics and society: What are triggers and barriers to establish TA? Can technological accidents / disasters be more than the peak of a (TA) development? Would simulation play a role on foresight for TA? And what can countries with an established (parliamentary) TA learn from those countries that are currently institutionalising TA? The aim of the workshop is to learn about different cultural conditions that have promoted the formation of a reflexive science: How important are sustainability, social acceptability, public participation and environmental compatibility in interdisciplinary research fields such as energy, mobility or health? Is there an understanding of TA relevant issues?


  • António Brandão Moniz (IET/CESNOVA and ITAS/KIT)
  • Kumi Okuwada(RISTEX/JST)