L’émergence des problèmes publics à l’ère du numérique

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Cet article explore les relations entre technologies numériques de l’information, les TIC, et politiques publiques, et plus particulièrement le rôle de ces technologies dans la construction des problèmes publics. Celles-ci sont de plus en plus présentes dans toutes les sphères des sociétés humaines, y compris dans la conduite des affaires publiques. Comprendre comment les TIC peuvent favoriser ou au contraire étouffer l’émergence d’un problème public est essentiel pour les décideurs politiques. En effet, il peut être vital pour les citoyens que représentent les décideurs politiques de s’emparer de certains problèmes publics (amiante, réchauffement climatique, …). Mais si une situation aussi périlleuse soit-elle ne se transforme pas en problème public, il y a de fortes chances qu’aucune politique publique ne s’en préoccupe. La transformation d’une situation en problème public est une étape indispensable à l’inscription d’un problème sur l’agenda public et à l’éventuelle construction d’une politique publique. Or, peu de recherches académiques ont traité de ce sujet. Afin de mieux comprendre comment les TIC peuvent influer sur l’émergence des problèmes publics, nous présenterons tout d’abord le cadre théorique dans lequel se situe cette analyse. Ensuite, une revue de la littérature nous permettra d’élaborer une classification des différentes voies d’influence des TIC sur l’émergence des problèmes publics. Enfin, nous nous pencherons sur ce qui reste encore un impensé de l’analyse des politiques publiques : celui de la non-émergence des problèmes publics. Nous soulignerons alors le rôle des TIC dans la captation des attentions privée et publique favorisant cette non émergence.

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This paper attempts to further theoretical and empirical understanding of adherent and constituent mobilization by proposing and analyzing frame alignment as a conceptual bridge linking social psychological and resource mobilization views on movement participation. Extension of Goffman's (1974) frame analytic perspective provides the conceptual/theoretical framework; field research on two religious movements, the peace movement, and several neighborhood movements provide the primary empirical base. Four frame alignment processes are identified and elaborated: frame bridging, frame amplification, frame extension, and frame transformation. The basic underlying premise is that frame alignment, of one variety or another, is a necessary condition for participation, whatever its nature or intensity, and that it is typically an interactional and ongoing accomplishment. The paper concludes with an elaboration of several sets of theoretical and research implications.
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In this study, we extend existing research on enterprise resource planning systems by exploring the effects of enterprise system adoption on subsequent non-financial and financial performance of a firm. Specifically, we investigate the role of formal and informal management control systems as mechanisms which mediate the effect of enterprise resource planning systems adoption on firm performance. Our empirical analyses are based on survey data drawn from 70 Finnish business units. Overall, our findings demonstrate that formal types of management control systems act as intervening variables mediating the positive lagged effect between enterprise systems adoption and non-financial performance. Informal types of management control systems, however, do not show similar mediating effects. We also predict and find a significant relationship between non-financial and financial firm performance. These results are important because the evidence on the joint roles of enterprise systems and management control system on improving the firm performance is very limited in prior literature. Our results show that the use of enterprise systems results in improved firm performance in the long run, and that more formal than informal types of management controls help firms achieve future performance goals.
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The 2003 blackout in the northern and eastern U.S. and Canada which caused a $6 billion loss in economic revenue is one of many indicators that the current electrical grid is outdated. Not only must the grid become more reliable, it must also become more efficient, reduce its impact on the environment, incorporate alternative energy sources, allow for more consumer choices, and ensure cyber security. In effect, it must become “smart.” Significant investments in the billions of dollars are being made to lay the infrastructure of the future Smart Grid. However, the authors argue that we must take great care not to sacrifice consumer privacy amidst an atmosphere of unbridled enthusiasm for electricity reform. Information proliferation, lax controls and insufficient oversight of this information could lead to unprecedented invasions of consumer privacy. Smart meters and smart appliances will constitute a data explosion of intimate details of daily life, and it is not yet clear who will have access to this information beyond a person’s utility provider. The authors of this paper urge the adoption of Dr. Ann Cavoukian’s conceptual model ‘SmartPrivacy’ to prevent potential invasions of privacy while ensuring full functionality of the Smart Grid. SmartPrivacy represents a broad arsenal of protections, encapsulating everything necessary to ensure that all of the personal information held by an organization is appropriately managed. These include: Privacy by Design; law, regulation and independent oversight; accountability and transparency; market forces, education and awareness; audit and control; data security; and fair information practices. Each of these elements is important, but the concept of Privacy by Design represents its sine qua non. When applying SmartPrivacy to the Smart Grid, not only will the grid be able to, for example, become increasingly resistant to attack and natural disasters—it will be able to do so while also becoming increasingly resistant to data leakage and breaches of personal information. The authors conclude that SmartPrivacy must be built into the Smart Grid during its current nascent stage, allowing for both consumer control of electricity consumption and consumer control of their personal information, which must go hand in hand. Doing so will ensure that consumer confidence and trust is gained, and that their participation in the Smart Grid contributes to the vision of creating a more efficient and environmentally friendly electrical grid, as well as one that is protective of privacy. This will result in a positive-sum outcome, where both environmental efficiency and privacy can coexist. KeywordsSmart Grid-SmartPrivacy-Electrical grid-Power utilities
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The information and communication technologies (ICTs) have a profound impact on economy and environment. The performance improvements in ICT leads to increased consumption of ICT products and services, which has numerous environmental implications on different levels.The author points to the analogy between the rebound effects in the energy sector and the growth effects in ICT. A multilevel taxonomy of rebound effects is taken from the energy economics literature in order to structure the discussion on the environmental implications of increasing use of ICT products and applications. The author distinguishes two levels of environmental impacts from ICT: first, related to the life cycle of ICT hardware and second, related to the way the ICT applications are being used. By presenting examples from different literature, the paper illustrates the complexity of the environmental impacts and stresses the decisive role of human behaviour in determining their significance.The issues presented in the paper are highly relevant to any decision-makers, who are placing large expectations on ICT and who needs to be aware about its potential environmental implications in the complex socioeconomic system of today. Huge investments are being made into the sector with large expectations for economic growth and environmental improvements, but neglecting the issue of rebound effect causes a risk of misallocation of funds. Having more information on effects and causes will allow decision-makers to optimise future development with a balance between economic growth and environmental quality.
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Dans un contexte de revalorisation de la participation politique locale comme moyen de remédier à la crise du politique, cette thèse porte sur la délibération observable sur les forums de discussion proposés par certains sites Internet municipaux (SIM). Les spécificités du forum électronique – les potentialités proprement techniques de cet outil (échanges écrits asynchrones, absence de co-présence des participants), mais aussi ses pratiques (anonymat et non-sélection des contributeurs, permanence et archivage des contributions) – conduisent à reconsidérer les modalités selon lesquelles les citoyens peuvent participer à la gestion des affaires de la cité. A partir de l'observation de SIM de villes de trois régions du Sud-Ouest (Aquitaine, Languedoc-Roussillon et Midi-Pyrénées), de l'analyse de leurs forums et d'entretiens auprès de responsables municipaux, sont plus particulièrement abordées les argumentations et compétences mobilisées par les internautes, les reconfigurations des hiérarchies grevant la prise de parole publique, la mise en forme de ces échanges discursifs par l'autorité municipale et les conditions de leur possible articulation avec la décision politique. En complément de la mise en perspective des différents aspects de la théorie délibérative avec la réalité empirique, a aussi été utilisée la méthode comparative avec d'autres dispositifs délibératifs et participatifs municipaux. Dans cette perspective, la recherche tente de dégager les spécificités de la délibération électronique, les significations et les tensions qu'elles révèlent au regard de la capacité du système politique actuel à engager des procédures de démocratisation de la décision publique.
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À première vue, voter par internet semble aller de soi. Il n'est pas difficile d'additionner des voix, et de nombreuses transactions bancaires ou commerciales se déroulent via ce nouveau medium. Mais cette opération présente des caractéristiques inédites dans le domaine informatique. Tout d'abord, le secret du vote interdit d'observer la procédure pendant son déroulement. Ensuite, le scrutin ne doit laisser aucune trace permettant de lier chaque électeur à son bulletin. Enfin, depuis que les élections existent, il y a toujours eu des tentatives de fraude à tous les niveaux et ce paramètre ne peut être négligé. Cet article détaille plusieurs aspects du vote à distance par internet. Il rappelle la signification des élections dans le domaine politique et en trace un brève historique, il présente le vote à distance par internet ainsi que les failles techniques inhérentes. Enfin, il examine la compatibilité du vote par internet avec quelques principes éthiques caractérisant les scrutins démocratiques. Plusieurs expériences menées dans différents pays sont évoquées et analysées. Il apparaît que le vote par internet est moins fiable que le vote par correspondance car sa complexité introduit de multiples failles de sécurité tandis que le manque de transparence inhérent à l'outil informatique entraîne inéluctablement des doutes quant à la sincérité des élections.
The development of the World Wide Web inspired the kind of utopian dreaming that often accompanies technological revolutions. In the 1990s, it seemed to many pundits that a perfected democracy, unbridled freedom, and the end of authority were right around the corner. In his introduction to The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You, Eli Pariser, former executive director of MoveOn, recalls his own dreams: “To my preteen self, it seemed clear that the Internet was going to democratize the world, connecting us with better information and the power to act on it.” (p. 3) Nearly twenty years hence, Pariser is much more cautious about the promise of the Internet. In The Filter Bubble, he addresses a development that seems to be turning the promise of unfiltered access to information on its head. The filter bubble is Pariser’s term for the rapidly advancing wave of online personalization that serves to isolate individuals and groups in information bubbles. Led by the likes of Google, Amazon, and Facebook—but becoming fairly ubiquitous online—the filter bubble limits information access by personalizing search results, advertisements, and websites. Much of this personalization is done without the knowledge of users, who are unaware of how their personal information is being used and what kinds of online information they might be missing. In a TED Talk given around the time of the publication of The Filter Bubble, Pariser gave an illustration of how the filter bubble works. In the midst of the spring 2011 political protests in Egypt, he asked two friends to do a search in Google for “Egypt.” One got a lot of information on the protests (not surprisingly), while the other got information on tourism in Egypt. Instead of this search providing results based on some objective, universally valid criteria—like PageRank in Google’s early days—it was personalized to each user. Reflecting this search philosophy, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has said that, ‘“A squirrel dying in front of your house may be more relevant to your interests right now than people dying in Africa.”’ (p. 1) People get different results from the same search, depending on what a search algorithm determines to be their individual interests and preferences. Perhaps touring the Nile and a dying squirrel might be more important to certain individuals at any one time than the fate of Africa. Is this the way we should organize Internet searching? Personalization is not new, and other people have written about its dangers, like Cass Sunstein in (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 2001). But The Filter Bubble is an up-to-date and particularly readable account that focuses on the pernicious influence of increasingly narrow information habitats on the life of democracy. For instance, what happens to civic life when there are no common sources of information like the newspapers and magazines of the mass media era? Democracy depends not only on an informed populace, but also on some common source of facts, arguments, and understanding. Without these, it is hard to communicate ideas and engage politically with fellow citizens. On the other hand, the benefits of personalization in terms of advertising revenue are clear. The more precisely web sites can target consumers based on individualized preferences, the more money they can charge for advertising. Think of all the different kinds of people that used to read daily newspapers, representing a socioeconomic, racial, and cultural mix that must have given advertisers fits. If you advertised fancy suits, much of your audience might be looking for casual clothes. If you advertised casinos in Atlantic City, you also paid to advertise to those looking for weekend camping trips. Online personalization allows advertisers to segment advertising markets in ways that were impossible during the days of mass media. Web sites can display personalized web pages and advertisements to each and every user. So will the Internet continue to follow the path of personalization and become a mere “delivery device” for advertising revenue, or can something be done to recover the original public spiritedness of the Internet’s early advocates? In The Filter Bubble’s last chapter, Pariser offers advice to citizens, companies, and government, which is a combination...
The internal democracy of political parties, like the French PS, former RPR and UMP, has followed, for a few years, concurrent and evolutionary logics which seem to belong to several models inspired by Habermas’normative paradigms, variously combined. The parties rediscover thus, in spite of the representative mode and « deliberative requirement » crisis, universalistic inspired processes of liberal democracy. They remain however marked, according to a holist and institutional design of pluralism, by the republican model and the disputed myth of the party’s unified identity. Lastly, the promotion of an individualistic and deliberative design of democracy is affected by the multidimension of the party’s organization, affected by sectored, corporate and identity claims. Tensions between these various designs, or their hybridization, express the ambiguous prospects of parties’alternative modes of participation and legitimization.
This paper analyses 'debate threads' of the UDF, Jeunes Populaires (UMP) and Désirs d'avenir web forums, between October 2006 and April 2007. It shows that discursive activities are, in decreasing order, the "disputes", the "proposal debates", the "proposal messages" and the "criticism and support of candidates". The "proposal debates", mainly found in Désirs d'Avenir, are very rare in Jeunes Populaires. Despite their high level of controversy, some changes in the participants' opinions do occasionally occur during these debates. Yet the PS and UMP candidates' programmes do not seem to be linked to these opinions.
This case study examines the Obama presidential campaign's use of the participatory Internet to manage its grassroots campaign. Grounded in relationship-management theory and dialogic principles in online relationship building, the study analyzed interviews with campaign staff, its Web site, and its news articles. Five themes emerged regarding the campaign's integration of the Internet and grassroots strategy; 6 themes surfaced regarding the campaign's Internet use to manage relationships. Recommendations are made for exploring relationship management theory's intersection with the Internet and political campaigns.
This paper proposes a natural history framework for analyzing interactional processes through which personal difficulties or troubles are identified, reacted to, elaborated, and perhaps transformed into a specific sort of deviance. These processes center around efforts to do something about or remedy the trouble, and are critically shaped by the nature and direction of the intervention of some outside, usually official party. The form a trouble ultimately assumes is in large part a product of micro-political struggles for the support and legitimation of such official agents.
LIVING IN TEMPS RÉELS (REAL TIME) Is the revival of militant practices around ICT possible within political parties? Based on a monographic analysis of the “virtual section of the socialist party”, TemPS réels, we examine transformations to militant practices concomitant with the appearance of uses of information and communication technologies. We show that traditional political parties are overcoming their historical sluggishness and taking up Internet tools. These tools facilitate a set of innovative militant practices, thus undermining the traditional division within these parties between head offices responsible for programmes and media communication, and grass-roots officers responsible for the electoral machine and neighbourhood militant actions.
Cette communication vise a montrer que le weblog comme outil de communication place la deliberation, consideree comme la confrontation d’opinions diverses et adverses, au cœur de l’apprentissage. Neanmoins, si le discours general sur la blogosphere vante, d’une part, les libertes d’expression et d’information et d’autre part le reseau de connaissance rendu possible via une logique d’intelligence collective, il n’en demeure pas moins que les environnements socio-techniques de la communication par les blogs creent des normes et des frontieres qui participent a des clotures informationnelles, cognitives et spatiales qui limitent la deliberation. L’apprentissage, la transmission de connaissance, dans ce nouvel espace virtuel doit etre replace sous un eclairage pragmatique.
Au cours des dernières années, la nature controversée d’un nombre croissant d’enjeux placés au cœur des préoccupations politiques , ainsi que l’évolution des modes de gouvernance ont conduit à l’émergence de dispositifs qui sont venus enrichir et compléter les modes de gestion politiques traditionnels, en laissant davantage de place à la discussion et à la participation des citoyens. Bien qu’ils puissent prendre un grand nombre de formes, ces dispositifs participatifs se proposent tous de faciliter la prise de parole et d’organiser la discussion dans le but de diversifier les sources des connaissances sur lesquelles s’appuie une décision. La multiplication des expérimentations sur les modalités d’investigation d’une question fournit en effet un terrain propice à un renouveau des modalités d’élaboration de mesures sous forme de politiques publiques (policy), contribuant ainsi à la recherche d’un meilleur ajustement de l’action publique aux préférences collectives, par d’autres moyens que les choix de programmes exprimés au moment d’un vote . Par la même, elle fait office de laboratoire de recherche sur les conditions d’un renouvellement de l’activité politique elle-même (politics) : ces dispositifs se proposent non seulement de « tester des formes d’organisation et des procédures destinées à faciliter la coopération entre les spécialistes et les profanes, mais également à rendre visibles et audibles des groupes émergents dépourvus de porte-parole officiels. »
The instrumentalist principles are applied to fundamental social theory. The concept of the public is more general than that of the state, which is the public politically organized, with suitable officials; the public itself is individuals in relations, the latter being so complex and mobile in existing publics that the whole social fabric is amorphous and inarticulate. Law, associated with the state, is the total of the conditions established for making the results of interaction somewhat predictable. The "eclipse of the public" is effectively described, with a tracing of the historical causes underlying it in the rise of democracy and associated technology. The conditions for the emergence of the public and the formation of a genuine community are found chiefly in the free communication of knowledge of every sort. The most hopeful method for such emergence is, concisely, the practical recognition of the interdependence of individual and social aspects of existence, plus free experimental inquiry. Tendencies in a forward direction are noted. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Some accounting information systems research suggests that the implementation of enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems improves corporate performance [Hayes DC, Hunton JE, Reck JL. Market reaction to ERPS implementation announcements. J Inf Syst 2001;15(1): 3–18; Hunton JE, Lippincott B, Reck J. Enterprise resource planning systems: Comparing firm performance of adopters and nonadopters. Int J Account Inf Syst 2003;4:165–184], while a seemingly disparate line of managerial accounting research indicates that the inclusion of non-financial performance incentives (NFPI) in executive compensation contracts also enhances performance [Said AA, HassabElnaby HR, Wier, B. An empirical investigation of the performance consequences of non-financial measures. J Manage Account Res 2003;15:193–223]. Two theoretical perspectives tie together these research streams. Cybernetic control theory explains how ERP systems offer the means by which managers can effectively use non-financial performance indicators, and agency theory describes how NFPI provide the motive and opportunity for managers to attend to key non-financial performance indicators. The research hypothesis tested herein asserts that the joint adoption of ERP and use of NFPI will yield greater corporate performance than either ERP or NFPI alone. In the current study, performance is reflected by return on assets (ROA) and stock returns (SR). Study results support the hypothesis, as archival data indicate that firms with both NFPI and ERP obtain significantly higher short-term and long-term ROA and SR than either ERP-only or NFPI-only firms. Research findings offer valuable insight into the theoretical and practical implications of jointly adopting the ERP and NFPI strategies.
This paper reviews the literature on the problem of information overload, with particular reference to business organisations. The literature reveals that although the problem of information overload has existed for many years, in recent years the problem has become more widely recognised and experienced. Both perceptions and the actual effects of information overload have been exacerbated by the rapid advances made in information and communication technology, although it is not clear cut as to whether the Internet has worsened or improved the situation. A theme stressed in the literature is the paradoxical situation that, although there is an abundance of information available, it is often difficult to obtain useful, relevant information when it is needed. Some solutions put forward to reduce information overload are: a reduction in the duplication of information found in the professional literature; the adoption of personal information management strategies, together with the integration of software solutions such as push technology and intelligent agents; and the provision of value-added information (filtered by software or information specialists). An emphasis is placed on technology as a tool and not the driver, while increased information literacy may provide the key to reducing information overload.
Designing privacy into systems at the beginning of the development process necessitates the effective translation of privacy principles, models, and mechanisms into system requirements.
This study develops an evolutionary theory of the capabilities and behavior of business firms operating in a market environment. It includes both general discussion and the manipulation of specific simulation models consistent with that theory. The analysis outlines the differences between an evolutionary theory of organizational and industrial change and a neoclassical microeconomic theory. The antecedents to the former are studies by economists like Schumpeter (1934) and Alchian (1950). It is contrasted with the orthodox theory in the following aspects: while the evolutionary theory views firms as motivated by profit, their actions are not assumed to be profit maximizing, as in orthodox theory; the evolutionary theory stresses the tendency of most profitable firms to drive other firms out of business, but, in contrast to orthodox theory, does not concentrate on the state of industry equilibrium; and evolutionary theory is related to behavioral theory: it views firms, at any given time, as having certain capabilities and decision rules, as well as engaging in various ‘search' operations, which determines their behavior; while orthodox theory views firm behavior as relying on the use of the usual calculus maximization techniques. The theory is then made operational by the use of simulation methods. These models use Markov processes and analyze selection equilibrium, responses to changing factor prices, economic growth with endogenous technical change, Schumpeterian competition, and Schumpeterian tradeoff between static Pareto-efficiency and innovation. The study's discussion of search behavior complicates the evolutionary theory. With search, the decision making process in a firm relies as much on past experience as on innovative alternatives to past behavior. This view combines Darwinian and Lamarkian views on evolution; firms are seen as both passive with regard to their environment, and actively seeking alternatives that affect their environment. The simulation techniques used to model Schumpeterian competition reveal that there are usually winners and losers in industries, and that the high productivity and profitability of winners confer advantages that make further success more likely, while decline breeds further decline. This process creates a tendency for concentration to develop even in an industry initially composed of many equal-sized firms. However, the experiments conducted reveal that the growth of concentration is not inevitable; for example, it tends to be smaller when firms focus their searches on imitating rather than innovating. At the same time, industries with rapid technological change tend to grow more concentrated than those with slower progress. The abstract model of Schumpeterian competition presented in the study also allows to see more clearly the public policy issues concerning the relationship between technical progress and market structure. The analysis addresses the pervasive question of whether industry concentration, with its associated monopoly profits and reduced social welfare, is a necessary cost if societies are to obtain the benefits of technological innovation. (AT)
This chapter argues that a comparative approach to analyzing the relationship between technology and political institutions has the potential to o!er renewed understanding of the development of the Internet in election campaigning. Taking the di!erent characteristics of political parties and the norms and rules of the electoral environment in the United States and the United Kingdom as an illustration, it suggests that the relationship between technology and political institutions is dialectical. Technologies can reshape institutions, but institutions will mediate eventual outcomes. The chapter outlines "ve key variables: degree of systemic institutional pluralism; organization of membership; candidate recruitment and selection; campaign "nance; and the “old” campaign communication environment. This approach has the potential to generate a theoretical framework for explaining di!erences in the impact of the Internet on election campaigning across liberal democracies.
Cette recherche s’intéresse à la notion d’attention, cette étape particulière où l’individu sélectionne l’information qui lui semble pertinente pour décider. Dans ce but, une première partie présente différents aspects de l’attention, tant du point de vue individuel qu’organisationnel. Dans une deuxième partie, une forme particulière d’organisation appelée communauté cognitive est présentée. A partir d’une étude portant sur 62 entrepreneurs adhérant à ces formes communautaires, nous nous intéressons à différentes formes de traitement de l’information qui peuvent s’y développer. Utilisant un algorithme d’inspiration biomimétique de classification, deux classes sont identifiées. Elles permettent de mieux comprendre en quoi ces organisations non productives permettent de développer les capacités d’attention. Les résultats montrent qu’il existe plusieurs modèles permettant d’expliquer le niveau d’attention perçu par les adhérents. Ils montrent également l’influence des activités relationnelles et des attentes individuelles sur le développement de ces capacités inter organisationnelles d’attention. Mots-clés : attention, réseau, communauté cognitive, classification. This work is about a specific step of the decision process called "attention". The first part of this work describes different aspects of the "attention" from an individual and an organisational point of view. In the second part, we speak about interorganisational collaborations, called "cognitive communities", that are not interested in the production of market products and services. These communities are built upon their abilities to create favourable informational and decisional opportunities. 62 head managers belonging to three "cognitive communities" are interviewed in order to understand how such communities may improve attention capabilities. Results show that it is relevant to distinguish two classes with a related regression model in order to explain a level of perceived attention. Keywords : attention, network, cognitive community, classification. Esta investigación se interesa por la noción de atención, esta etapa particular donde el individuo selecciona la información que le parece pertinente para decidir. En esta meta, una primera parte presenta diferentes aspectos de la atención, tanto del punto de vista individual como organizacional. En una segunda parte, está presentada una forma particular de organización llamada comunidad cognoscitiva. A partir de un estudio sobre 62 empresarios que han adherido a estas formas comunitarias, nos interesamos por diferentes formas de tratamiento de la información que puede desarrollarse en él. Al utilizar, un algoritmo de inspiración bio-mimética de clasificación, dos clases son identificadas. Pemiten entender mejor en que estas organizaciones no productivas permiten desarrollar las capacidades de atención. Los resultados muestran que existen varios modelos que permiten explicar el nivel de atención percebido por los adherentes. Muestran también la influencia de la actividades relacionales y las esperas individuales sobre el desarrollo de estas capacitades interorganizacionales de atenció. Palabras clave : Atención, comunidades cognoscitivas, clasificación.
"Everyone knows 'drunk driving' is a 'serious' offense. And yet, everyone knows lots of 'drunk drivers' who don't get involved in accidents, don't get caught by the police, and manage to compensate adequately for their 'drunken disability.' Everyone also knows of 'drunk drivers' who have been arrested and gotten off easy. Gusfield's book dissects the conventional wisdom about 'drinking-driving' and examines the paradox of a 'serious' offense that is usually treated lightly by the judiciary and rarely carries social stigma."—Mac Marshall, Social Science and Medicine "A sophisticated and thoughtful critic. . . . Gusfield argues that the 'myth of the killer drunk' is a creation of the 'public culture of law.' . . . Through its dramatic development and condemnation of the anti-social character of the drinking-driver, the public law strengthens the illusion of moral consensus in American society and celebrates the virtues of a sober and orderly world."—James D. Orcutt, Sociology and Social Research "Joseph Gusfield denies neither the role of alcohol in highway accidents nor the need to do something about it. His point is that the research we conduct on drinking-driving and the laws we make to inhibit it tells us more about our moral order than about the effects of drinking-driving itself. Many will object to this conclusion, but none can ignore it. Indeed, the book will put many scientific and legal experts on the defensive as they face Gusfield's massive erudition, pointed analysis and criticism, and powerful argumentation. In The Culture of Public Problems, Gusfield presents the experts, and us, with a masterpiece of sociological reasoning."—Barry Schwartz, American Journal of Sociology This book is truly an outstanding achievement. . . . It is sociology of science, sociology of law, sociology of deviance, and sociology of knowledge. Sociologists generally should find the book of great theoretical interest, and it should stimulate personal reflection on their assumptions about science and the kind of consciousness it creates. They will also find that the book is a delight to read."—William B. Bankston, Social Forces
Mods and Rockers, skinheads, video nasties, designer drugs, bogus asylum seeks and hoodies. Every era has its own moral panics. It was Stanley Cohen’s classic account, first published in the early 1970s and regularly revised, that brought the term ‘moral panic’ into widespread discussion. It is an outstanding investigation of the way in which the media and often those in a position of political power define a condition, or group, as a threat to societal values and interests. Fanned by screaming media headlines, Cohen brilliantly demonstrates how this leads to such groups being marginalised and vilified in the popular imagination, inhibiting rational debate about solutions to the social problems such groups represent. Furthermore, he argues that moral panics go even further by identifying the very fault lines of power in society.
Throughout a two-year campaign, Barack Obama's political team -- including campaign manager David Plouffe and senior adviser David Axelrod -- tapped into information technology to redefine the election process and interact with people in new and different ways. From the beginning, the Obama team understood the power of the technology and how it could be harnessed for political gain, says Deniece Peterson, principal analyst at INPUT, a Reston, VA, government-focused market research and consulting firm. It should come as no surprise that databases, social networking tools, and IT systems are likely to play a central role in the Obama administration. While new media has enormous power to help a candidate get elected, it also wields influence as a tool for operating a more efficient and transparent government -- and advancing a political agenda. As campaigns and government become more familiar with digital tools and the technology advances, the face of politics will continue to change.
La société des écrans
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Un caillou dans la chaussure de la presse française : Retour sur l'expérience
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