Professor Jeremy Sheff’s forthcoming book, Valuing Progress: A Pluralist Approach to Knowledge Governance, is now under contract with Cambridge University Press.Here’s a blurb:
Should the crops that feed the world be patented? How should musicians earn a living? Why does lung cancer research get half as much funding as breast cancer research? Should a college textbook cost 50% less in Bangkok than it does in Boston? Who should pay for childhood vaccinations in the developing world? The answers to these questions not only shape the world we live in; they have profound cascading effects on the future, and on the lives and opportunities that will be available to generations not yet born.
Valuing Progress is a book about our relationship with the future. It is about the ways societies go about deciding how to make tomorrow better than yesterday, how they determine whose desires for the future will be pursued and whose will be deferred or denied, and how they apportion the burdens and benefits of getting us there. It is about how we collectively use social institutions—especially legal institutions—to generate and distribute the new knowledge that the future will depend on. And most importantly, it is about how we justify those institutions. Its core argument is that that the creation and distribution of new knowledge implicates plural and competing values, and that designing regimes to govern new knowledge therefore requires institutions and ethics that can accommodate those values.
Valuing Progress will be available in late 2018.