IDS 403 Milestone Four
Analyzing an Issue or Event in Technology through the Lenses of the Natural and Applied Sciences
Southern New Hampshire University
For my topic, I have chosen social networking because I feel that it has had great impact on the world that we live in, perhaps more than any other technology. It has changed the way we communicate and interact with others when not face to face, in both positive and negative ways. In this paper, I will analyze how social networking interacts with the natural and applied sciences lens and its impact on various institutions.
Lens Analysis – Natural and Applied Sciences
Natural sciences deal with the physical world and include astronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, and physics. Applied science is the process of applying scientific knowledge to practical problems, and is used in fields such as engineering, health care, information technology, and early childhood education (Cambridge College, n.d.).
Whether the science is natural or applied, scientists are increasingly embracing social media in their professional lives. A 2015 survey found that 47% of scientists connected with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), use social media to follow new discoveries and discuss science (Pew Research, 2015). The ability to build social media networks has helped cultivate communication and collaboration between scientists regardless of where they are in the world. These include broad social media outlets, the most popular being Twitter and Facebook, but also more specialized platforms that cater to smaller groups that pool resources. The digital revolution has provided alternative routes to disseminating scientific discoveries and keeping up-to-date with the literature.
Virtually all scientists engage with citizens. Mid-career and older scientists are especially likely to speak to reporters. Younger scientists are more likely to use social media. And blogging is something that equally spans the generations under age 65 (Pew Research, 2015).
Science communication is viewed as critical to ecology and conservation, where research findings are often used to shape public policy and mainstream media attention. Though much of scientists’ communication on social media is directed at other scientists, by virtue of the medium, information is making its way to the broader community, noting statistics showing that nearly half of ecologists’ followers on Twitter are non-scientists, environmental groups and the media.
Ecologists and conservation scientists are dealing with applied problems that the public cares a lot about. So when science gets stuck in the circles of academia and doesn’t make it out to the public, it’s doing that publicly funded research and its potential applications, a disservice. In this era of alternative facts and some mixed messaging surrounding science, data-driven scientific information offers a light of truth (Science Daily, 2018).
How Scientists Engage the Public. (2015, February 15). Retrieved from https://www.pewresearch.org/science/2015/02/15/how-scientists-engage-public/.
How social media helps scientists get the message across. (2018, April 12). Retrieved from https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/04/180412085729.htm.
Natural and Applied Sciences. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.cambridgecollege.edu/degree/natural-and-applied-sciences.
IDS 403 Milestone Four
Analyzing an Issue or Event in Technology through the Social Sciences
Susan P. Anderson
December 8, 2019
Southern New Hampshire University
For my topic, I have chosen social networking because I feel that it has had great impact on the world that we live in, perhaps more than any other technology. It has changed the way we communicate and interact with others when not face to face, in both positive and negative ways. In this paper, I will analyze how social networking interacts with the social sciences lens and its impact on various institutions.
Lens Analysis – Social Sciences
Studying society, culture, and human relationships will lead us to an understanding of how people live and how to improve our lives. In his article titled “Social Media Is About Social Science Not Technology,” Brian Solis states that “Social science is the study of society and human behaviors. As an umbrella term, we should think about social media and mobile behavior as it’s related to psychology, anthropology, communication, economics, human geography, ethnography, et al. After all, everything comes down to people (Solis, 2012).
Social media have rendered the opinions and interactions among complex networks of individuals accessible and searchable. Such data is of interest to social scientists. Accessibility to voluntarily generated and often publically published content on social networking and social media sites provides a strong draw for social science researchers. Today’s technology not only equips scholars with tools and methods to analyze Big Data, but also generates the Big Data itself by creating platforms over which ordinary people lead traceable social lives, and get transformed into behavior patterns: Their activities, connections, and products are collected, saved, and can be subjected to analysis (Felt, 2016).
Once published, Big Data social media research can serve as a great tool for those working in social science professions. According to a special issue called “Social Media, Internet and Society” published by MDPI, articles can be wholly theoretical or incorporate empirical data, broadly defined, that illustrates a theoretical argument and/or complicates existing theoretical debates. A partial list of suggested topics includes network formation and maintenance, race and racism, big data, small data, gender and sexism/cis-ism, intersectionalities, courtship and dating, sex and sexuality, algorithms and curation, privacy and publicity, digital dualism, augmented reality, popular discourses of new and social media, embodied technology, social media ecologies, prosumption/identity prosumption, political processes, and labor and exploitation MDPI, 2017).
Brian Solis. (2019, June 16). Social media is about social science not technology. Retrieved from https://www.briansolis.com/2012/03/social-media-is-about-social-science-not-technology/.
Felt, M. (2016). Social media and the social sciences: How researchers employ Big Data analytics. Big Data & Society, 3(1), 205395171664582. doi: 10.1177/2053951716645828
MDPI AG. (2017). Social Media, Internet and Society. EISSN 2076-0760. Retrieved from https://www.mdpi.com/journal/socsci/special_issues/social_media_internet_and_society