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Discussion 8

The Discussion Assignment
After completing this weeks reading assignment, answer two of the following questions (one from each module), and then read and comment on at least four of your fellow students postings. Note that two of these questions come from last weeks reading and two from this weeks reading. You may answer a third questions for up to 30 points extra credit!  In addition to your textbook, you are encouraged to use the FTCC Library database resources (NC Live, Issues and Controversies, Opposing Viewpoints, etc) as a source of supporting information for your posts. If you use an outside source, be sure to mention what it was and where you found it.  For information on accessing the FTCC Library databases, see the Resources in the weekly assignments folders.

1. (From Module 15) Many key industries are dominated by a handful of large firms. This tendency has been increasingly evident in recent years, as many separate firms have merged into larger ones. How might this trend affect technological innovation? Could it pose a threat to the overall development of the economy? Explain your views. (
2. (From Module 15) Who comes to mind when you think of present-day entrepreneurs? To what extent are they similar to the classic entrepreneurs of the past who propelled industrial innovations?  Does today’s organizational environment promote or retard entrepreneurial efforts?
3. (From Module 16) What is meant by a focusing event with regards to the support of new technologies? What are some examples?  What are some social movements that have created a sense of urgency or crisis when opposing new technologies? When are large scale protests against a technology most likely?  When are they less likely?
4. (From Module 16) In what ways has technological advance increased the opportunity for democratic participation of the individual?  In what ways have advanced technologies possibly harmed the democratic process?  How do our own personal lives and challenges possibly prevent us from being more engaged with larger issues like climate change or fuel depletion?

Grading Criteria
NOTE:  Your answers to 2 of these topics/questions are 60% of the grade for this discussion board and your responses to at least four other students and days of participation make up the remaining 40%! Answers to topic questions must be at least 100 words in length and at least four responses to classmates must be at least 40 words in length.  You must post to this DB on at least 3 separate days to get full credit. If both questions answered are from the same module you will lose five points.
Late posts answering two of the topic questions will be eligible for no more than 60% if made within one week of the discussions closure. After one week this cannot be made up.
Course Textbook: Society and Technological Change (8th edition) by Rudi Volti  ISBN: 978-1-319-05825-8
FTCC Library Databases (scroll down on library web page for complete list) (Link opens in new window)

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