Value beyond scientific Validity: Let’s RULE (Reliability, Utility, LEgitimacy)

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My perspective piece contributes to social studies of biometric technologies, and to studies on values and valuation within debates of responsible innovation. I reflect on innovation as social practice where values are temporary settlements of considerations around validity, operability, and social compatibility of socio-technical innovations. As such, I propose a practice-based approach to testing values in new technologies and their respective emerging practice and governance arrangements around Reliability, Utility and LEgitimacy (RULE). These three values combine scientific with operational and social aspects of innovation as centre-points around which deliberative engagement can be facilitated between different societal perspectives, offering the opportunity to develop greater awareness of diverse and at times competing understandings of value. On the case study of forensic genetics – the use of genetic material and data for policing purposes in security and justice contexts – I make the case for multi-perspectival, cross-disciplinary, community-grounded deliberation based on RULE.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-103
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Responsible Innovation
Issue numbersup1
Early online date30 Oct 2020
Publication statusPublished - 4 Dec 2020


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