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Ignorance and Surprise – Science, Society, and Ecological Design - MIT Press Scholarship Online
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Ignorance and Surprise: Science, Society, and Ecological Design

Matthias Gross


Ignorance and surprise belong together: Surprises can make people aware of their own ignorance. And yet, perhaps paradoxically, a surprising event in scientific research—one that defies prediction or risk assessment—is often a window into new and unexpected knowledge. This book examines the relationship between ignorance and surprise, proposing a conceptual framework for handling the unexpected and offering case studies of ecological design that demonstrate the advantages of allowing for surprises and including ignorance in the design and negotiation processes. It draws on classical and contem ... More

Keywords: negotiation process, scientific development, technological development, Chicago, Lake Michigan, Germany, Leipzig, decision-making, design strategies, experimental practice

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2010 Print ISBN-13: 9780262013482
Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013 DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262013482.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Matthias Gross, author