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Home > Newsletter > Issue no. 5 - 2003

Issue no. 5 - 2003

by Redazione FGB [1], 24 September 2003

The Call for Comments on Innovation, Social risk and Political Responsibility closed on 6 August. In the last intervention, Daniele Navarra, who conducted the initiative, pointed out that "the role of centres of excellence such as the Bassetti Foundation is as much to guarantee that policies that concern the community as a whole are implemented in a democratic and pluralistic manner, as to investigate, analyse and delineate problem areas, risks and difficulties in the various alternatives proposed, and to ensure that manoeuvres by lobbies and the media are filtered out of the process". In Navarra's opinion, this should serve to "guarantee that democratic decision-making processes function in an unalienable manner to the benefit of the community".

On 1 September three new items were posted on-line, in the Topics section.

The first concerns an approach to the subject of responsibility that we will be trying to cover more frequently in the future: the artist's perspective. The item published in Topics was dedicated to an Australian artist whose work can be seen at the Venice Biennale from June to November 2003: Patricia Piccinini. Piccinini's aesthetic is particularly interesting to us at the Foundation, both because it concerns the transformations that technology is producing in the biosphere (and therefore in human beings) and because its primary message is one of reflection. The vision that Piccinini brings to bear on the transformations induced (or enabled) by technology is not one of anxiety or fear. Nor, however, is it one of enthusiasm. Hers is a thoughtful vision that suggests an approach rooted in responsibility.

In the second item of the Topics, the protagonist is Leone Montagnini, expanding upon a statement he made when he took part in the seminar/forum held by Giuseppe O. Longo in February. Montagnini highlights the fact that human beings are by nature ("in their very bones") technical animals and that if we took this aspect more into consideration (instead of, for example, denying it or contrasting it with a different "essence" of being human) we would achieve a much greater understanding of today's technological society.

The third item is a synergistic product of online discussions. We have published an exchange of views that took place recently in the web-log "Tout se tient", which in turn refers to another dialogue on the management of responsibility in systems that took place in 1999 in the Italian newsgroup dedicated to architecture. This was triggered by remark (uttered in a workshop in 1999 on the subject of the Fondazione Bassetti itself) referring to the construction of a mediaeval cathedral, understood as a system of collective responsibility which actually worked. The crux of the question was the observation that today's complex organisations tend to avoid (rather than deny) the problem of responsibility.

And finally, we close this Diary with a mention of a new web-log in which Paola Parmendola points out events, news, book reviews, and websites that may be of interest to readers of the Foundation's website.

One last word: we have an open editorial policy and anyone who is able to show that they know what they are talking about - and are able to express it - is welcome to take part. Anyone wishing to send in written contributions, comment or information on the topics we cover, can write to us.

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