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The Present as Future: The Problem of Translation in Corporate Science Projects

Abstract : The paper reviews a set of research projects intended to plan for the future. It uses an actor-network construct from Latour(s work on science practice, translation. The paper contrasts normal science practice with science in a corporate context. Both situations occur in actor networks, require translation and contain arbitrary decisions. The corporate context can be more problematic because of the greater diversity of actors and agendas. The longer the work goes on, the more actors there are. Research per se is a sustained effort toward emergent goals; in the context of fluid corporate networks, these goals can become lost in mis-translation from one phase to the next. Results that would otherwise build up science findings miss their mark, are delayed, or are overtaken by other developments. The findings exist, but the outcomes for which they were intended may not materialize.
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Eleanor Wynn. The Present as Future: The Problem of Translation in Corporate Science Projects. 1st Working Conference Researching the Future (Future-IS), Jun 2011, Turku, Finland. pp.43-56, ⟨10.1007/978-3-642-21364-9_4⟩. ⟨hal-01567989⟩



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