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Home > Books & Journals > Journal Abstracts Last Updated: 14:22 03/09/2007
Journal Abstracts #17: November 27, 2001


Journal Name: Prometheus, Volume 7, Number 1, June 1989



The Feminine Culture of the Telephone. People, Patterns and Policy
by Ann Moyal
Few detailed studies have been made in any country of telephone usage. This paper reports a qualitative national study of 200 women, metropolitan and country, which embraces women of diverse conditions and ages across Australian. It presents evidence of a deeply entrenched, caring, feminine culture of the telephone which underlies our family, community, and national development. Importantly, it conveys the voices and attitudes of women to a communication technology which, locally and internationally, is undergoing policy change. At a time when a 'new telecommunications framework' is being considered in Australia, the data challenge traditional 'malestream' conceptions of telephone usage and telecommunications policy, and focus the point that women and men make significantly difference use of, and have very different access to, decision-making about technology.
Telephone, women, telecommunications policy, technology, gender

From Paris to Narrandera: Adaptation in the Diffusion of Anthrax Vaccination in the Australian Pastoral Industry
by Jan Todd
In 1881 Louis Pasteur demonstrated to an incredulous world that efficacy of his vaccine for the prevention of the fatal disease anthrax in sheep and cattle. A decade later Pasteur's nephew and assistant, Adrien Loire, was manufacturing the vaccine in Sydney. But although Loir's operations were begun at the behest of local pastoralists, the diffusion of the Pasteur vaccine was not very successful in Australia. Within a few years it was virtually displaced from the market by the modified vaccine produced by two Australian men, John Alexander Gunn and John McGarvie Smith. The process of transfer and diffusion involved in that displacement is the concern of this paper. In particular, it highlights the importance of local adaptation for the successful diffusion of anthrax vaccination in Australia.
technology transfer, technological diffusion, technological adaptation, anthrax vaccination, Pasteur, Australian pastoral industry

Technological Vulnerability: a Neglected Area in Policy-making
by Colin Kearton and Brian Martin
Many technological systems are vulnerable to threats such as military attach, sabotage, sudden economic change or social disaffection. There are various ways to reduce such vulnerabilities, such as direct planning, diversification and self-reliance, but current policy-making takes little cognisance of the issue.
vulnerability, resilience, risk, policy-making

The Discovery, Development, and Diffusion of New Technology: the Cyanide Process for the Extraction of Gold, 1887-1914
by Alan L. Lougheed
In the 1880s the gold mining industry encountered severe problems in the extraction of gold from unoxidised ores which were being met more frequently. The gold extraction technology of mercury amalgamation became more inefficient to the extent that little more than half of the assayed gold content of the ore was being extracted. Clearly, a major breakthrough in metallury was required to overcome this problem. This occurred through the development of the cyanide process which not only raised the percentage of gold extracted from unoxidised ores but also, because of its cheapness, allowed much lower grade ores to be mined and treated than had been possible previously.
gold mining, gold extraction, metallurgy, cyanide process, Cassel Gold Extracting Company, J. S. MacArthur

The Management of Scientific Research
by Joe Landsberg
This paper examines the way publicly funded research organisations are managed in terms of the ethos of the scientific staff. Three models for the management of such organisations are considered and the recent management history of CSIRO is examined in relation to these models. The organisation has changed its management style as result of recent reviews; the consequence of this are considered.
management, research, scientific ethic, models

The MIC Program and the Politics of Science Policy
by Neal Ryan
The need to develop policies relating to the development of venture capital markets in Australia was reported regularly in the late 1970s and the early 1980s in science and technology policy literature. The Hawke Government's response to this area of market failure was to implement the MIC program. The history of this program indicates that although venture capital has been identified as an area of market failure, the program has been supported in accordance with the political climate prevailing at the time.
science and technology policy, MIC program, market failure, venture capital, public policy

The Politics of High Technology in Australia
by R. A. Joseph
The high technology debate in Australia since 1981 is analysed using one of the most prominent features of the debate - the political rhetoric and symbols used in the debate. This from of analysis emphasises both instrumental and expressive political activity. The high technology debate is seen as having a significant expressive component and function. Most of the advocacy for high technology came as a result of institutional pressure and efforts of the Minister for Science and Technology, Barry Jones. High technology became a 'maverick' term in political debate but it has now become an accepted part of current economic language. The paper draws a number of conclusions for policy from the analysis.
politics, symbols, rhetoric, high technology, Australia

New Production Concepts
by John A. Mathews
Flexibility within a framework of internal labour markets is now widely seen to be an important factor in the ability of manufacturing firms to respond quickly to changes in market conditions - which is increasingly coming to be the form that competitive advantage takes in advanced industrial economies. An emerging and flourishing literature has identified a number of 'new production concepts' being developed in manufacturing industries, that depart from time-honoured Taylorist systems of job fragmentation and skill minimisation. The new concepts, such as 'flexible specialisation', 'human-centred production', and 'diversified quality production', are all in one way or another seeking to characterise a form of
New technology, new production concepts, productivity, flexible specialisation, human-centred production, skill formation, work organisation

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