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Fundación Santillana Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes

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The Democracy of Knowledge

Daniel Innerarity

More than a medium for information, knowledge is an instrument for coexistence. Its most important function is not to reflect a supposed objective truth, adapting our perceptions to the exterior reality, but to turn itself into the most powerful device when it comes time to configure a democratic space for human beings to live communally. The fact is that our main collective problems, contrary to what is normally said, are not problems of will, of lack of decision-making or of immorality; we should also consider them as cognitive failures or ones that originate in a deficient organization of knowledge from the point of view of its democratic legitimacy.

This book develops the thesis that knowledge and its surroundings (the politics of science and of innovation, government political consulting, evaluation of public policies, understanding of the current social transformation or the cognitive competence of the regulators) are areas in which not only economic prosperity but, more fundamentally, democratic quality is decided. The politics of knowledge and those that arise through knowledge have been turned into a subject of democratic citizenship in which many theoretical problems are in play, but mainly that of the quality of our public space.

 

Translated by Hope Doyle D´Ambrosio

Book Details

Title:
La democracia del conocimiento (2011)
Author:
Daniel Innerarity
ISBN:
978-84-493-2567-0

Authors > Daniel Innerarity

Daniel Innerarity

(Bilbao 1959) is a professor of political and social philosophy and Ikerbasque researcher at the University of the Basque Country/Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea. A former fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation at the University of Munich and visiting professor at the University of Paris 1-Sorbonne. His latest books include Ética de la hospitalidad [The Ethics of Hospitality], La transformación de la política [The Transformation of Politics] (3rd Miguel de Unamuno Essay Prize and 2003 National Literature Prize in the Essay category), La sociedad invisible [The Invisible Society] (21st Espasa Essay Prize), El nuevo espacio público [The New Public Realm] and El futuro y sus enemigos [The Future and Its Enemies]. He has also received the Prize for Humanities, Culture, Arts and Social Sciences from the Basque Studies Society/Eusko Ikaskuntza in 2008. Member of the Academy of Sciences and Arts headquartered in Salzburg.

 

Articles by the same author

Nostalgia for Quiet Passions

Present-day capitalism has undergone a change of emotions because of the crisis. Greed, a useful emotion for  17th century capitalism, capable of setting limits to any self-destructive passions, is less and less able to exercise the moderating function which it was assigned by classical liberalism and, amongst other things, has turned expectation into a true economic driving force in itself. In his article, Daniel Innerarity asks why this is so and points out that the so-called...

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