In conclusion of this Call for Comments

( 20 December 2003 )
( posted by Massimiano Bucchi )

Thanks to all of those who have posted their comments.

I think many of the points which have been raised are central both to FGB's core mission and to Latour's reflection as it was also presented during the Milan lecture.
To conclude, let me emphasize that the concept of representation bears close links not only to the concept of innovation, but also to the concept of responsibility, to the point that one could further rephrase Latour's pledge as "No responsibility without representation"!
Due also to that "humiliation of politics" which Latour regrets, today we find ourselves dealing with procedures and concepts of political representation which have remained the same for centuries, while technoscience has dramatically changed our world at an increasingly faster pace. I am here referring not to the content of technoscience, like discoveries, but also to the forms of technoscience in which we are embedded. If - as scholars like Walter J. Ong have shown - the development of communication technologies such as writing are coupled with the development of centralized political powers, what could be, for instance the political frameworks to understand and steer our new technoscientific societies, innerved with blog writing and scientific inscription techniques?
Do we have to rethink the very concept of democracy?
For those who are interested - and can read Italian - these and other related issues are discussed also in an article I have recently published in journal "Il Mulino" 6/2003, "La democrazia alla prova della scienza" ('Science puts democracy on trial' (pp.1050-1058).