Science and technology

What is science? What is technology?

The conventional answer is simply that science is what scientists produce, and technology is what technologists produce. Scientists and technologists are defined as people who have been formally trained in Western universities and institutions, or in Third World institutions mimicking Western ideas and traditions.

This answer is not very useful, so let us look for another. Let us define science broadly as “ways of knowing” and technology as “ways of doing”. From this perspective all societies, in all their diversity, have had science and technology systems on which their distinct and diverse development has been based. Technologies and systems of technologies bridge the gap between nature’s resources and human needs. Systems of knowledge and culture provide the framework for the perception and utilization of nature’s resources.

– Adapted from “Biopiracy: the plunder of nature and knowledge” by Vandana Shiva, p134-135.

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