Unique conférence à l'UNIL du Prof. Martin Bauer de la London School of Economy qui présente son ouvrage "Atoms, Bytes and Genes"
Learning from Resistance - Towards a social psychology of techno-scientific mobilisation
Martin Bauer would like to discuss the key theoretical tenant of his recent book 'Atoms, Bytes & Genes', which summarises issues arising from years of researching techno-scientific controversies from a social psychological perspective. There might be some ideas for a Social Psychology that seeks to contribute beyond being an 'acceptance provider' for the fait-accompli otherwise achieved. Tarde (1890) argued that creativity and invention have none or little regularity, while the diffusion of new ideas and practices follows the 'laws of imitation'. This influential idea of mindless-but-lawful imitation is the axiom of the still influential diffusion of innovation paradigm and the linear model of science -> engineering -> marketing. I will argue that the logistic-sigmoid model of diffusion with the tipping point (maybe at 50%) is a special case, namely when there is no resistance in the innovation process; a very rare case which begs the question: why does the dog not bark? More common are mobilisation for change processes that encounter resistance, and then we must ask: what does resistance contribute to the process? I will argue that the functions of resistance are analogous to pain in relation to this activity: focussing attention where needed; enhancing the 'body and self-image', evaluating on-going mobilisation and urging strategic adaptation and alterations to the plan. My pain model of resistance is a more realistic account of the innovation process. Beyond the functionality of resistance we might also try to understand what enables that spirit of resistance which Albert Camus captured as: 'I resist therefore we are'.