Politics in Wired Nations

Politics in Wired Nations : Selected Writings of Ithiel de Sola Pool

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Ithiel de Sola Pool was a pioneering social scientist, a distinguished scholar of the political process, and one of the most original thinkers in the development of the social sciences. Passionately engaged in politics, he continued his role of leadership throughout his life, building the MIT Political Science Department into an outstanding group. He organized international teams of social scientists and collaborated widely to develop the understanding of social change. He was a frequent adviser to governments as consultant and in-house critic, and a successful advocate of limits on government regulation. Politics in Wired Nations presents his writings on the social and political impact of different communication systems and new telecommunications technology.

Included in this volume is the first study of trends in a global information society, and the first study of social networks and the -small world- phenomenon that creates new relationships and routes of informal influence and political power, both domestic and international. Pool's essays on the politics of foreign trade, the influence of American businessmen on Congress, and changeable -unnatural- institutions of the modern world (e.g., bureaucracies, mega-cities, and nation-states) are herein contained. Pool describes a nonviolent revolution in freedom and political control that is possible as the world changes from the era of one-way mass communications--targeted to national audiences--to a new era of abundant, high-capacity, low-cost, interactive, and user-controlled communications on a global scale. He discusses policy choices for freedom, the battlegrounds ahead, and the risks of government involvement in the regulation of new telecommunication technologies.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 395 pages
  • 149.9 x 222.5 x 26.7mm | 625.97g
  • Taylor & Francis Inc
  • Transaction Publishers
  • Somerset, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0765809419
  • 9780765809414

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"Ithiel de Sola Pool was the guru as to the impact of the rapidly developing information technology on the quality of life and democratic processes. The essays in this book illumine the field of communications and society with great clarity and brilliant insights. They constitute an essential base for understanding the telecommunications and information revolution." - Henry Geller, communications fellow, The Markle Foundation, Washington, D.C. "ithiel de Sola Pool was a truly creative and innovative social scientist who firmly believed in the merit and strength of ideas developed in open settings. As the Western adage goes, truth makes one free. Ithiel de Sola Pool not only believed in this but also in the creative and emancipatory nature of technologies in making this adage more deeply and widely realized. He was a person always at ease with different ideas, persons, and environments." - Takashi Inoguchi, professor of political science, University of Tokyo; former assistant secretary general of the United States.
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About Ithiel De Sola Pool

Ithiel de Sola Pool directed the research program in communications at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for thirty years. He was a skeptic of ideologies and resisted manipulation of symbols by political leaders. He believed in the spirit of free inquiry and the contribution of social science to strengthen independent citizen decision making in democracy. Lloyd S. Etheredge, a political scientist and psychologist, was a member of the MIT faculty for eight years and is former director of Graduate Studies for International Relations at Yale University.
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