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Developments in the field of the bioeconomy open up new possibilities for us, but at the same time they question our relationship with the environment and nature. How do we want to deal with this personally and as society?
At the beginning of our research project "Farming the Uncanny Valley", we asked ourselves how to conduct an in-depth discourse on bioeconomic topics. In a series of workshops in rural and urban areas, we translated examples from current research into scenarios in order to make aspects of a future life with bioeconomy in the living environment tangible and discussable. At the end of our project, we compared and sorted all statements that we collected in the course of our workshop series in order to analyze them and use them as a field of discourse. Our hope is that the resulting graphic will help to orientate oneself in the discourses and to compare positions on different topics.
What can I actually do? What is my responsibility? What is my understanding of justice?
The questions about one‘s own power, one‘s own responsibility and one‘s own image of justice are guiding our discourse on the bioeconomy. They connect directly to the SELF in the center – my SELF is moved by the questions. A confrontation with concepts of power, responsibility and justice let me wander
through the map shown here, explore and get to know new positions. Sometimes blind spots appear and
sometimes you discover unfamiliar territory. The questions of power, responsibility and justice guide and drive me on the thematic map. They help me to develop an attitude.
What understanding do I have of nature, mankind and technology? Are the three terms closely related for me? Or is one of them particularly close to my heart?
We rarely think about it in everyday life, and yet our ideas about nature, people and technology shape our actions, our values and, last but not least, our attitudes towards new technologies, including in the field of bioeconomy. The triangle of the notions of nature, mankind and technology spans our field of discourse. Within this field are all those topics that we associate with bioeconomy. According to one‘s own topic preferences, the field of discourse is filled differently for each person. In addition, the field is shaped by our individual relationship to nature, technology and people, depending on our own attitudes, perspectives and points of view. All arguments, feelings and attitudes towards a technical development take place in this field of discourse.
What do bioeconomy, power and nature have to do with me? Which values determine my actions? Do my actions have an impact on social developments?
It is complex to imagine a society in which bioeconomy is commonplace and at the same time to find out whether or not we want to live in this society. The SELF moves in our field of discourse to find answers to questions about one‘s own point of view. We explore the thematic map that stretches between our notion of nature, man and technology. Questions of power, justice and responsibility let us reflect on our knowledge, influence and values and connect the SELF with the discourse topics. They lead us to our own opinion. In doing so, we occasionally discover contradictions within ourselves that are nevertheless an important part of our exploration.
What do bioeconomic topics trigger in me? Where do I have a weird gut feeling? And how do I deal with this feeling?
The bioeconomy field of discourse is comparable to a diverse landscape. In the development of one‘s own point of view, the path of the SELF sometimes also leads over hills and through valleys in which we feel uncomfortable. Here we encounter confusion and things that question our usual patterns and confront us with ambiguities, contradictions and feelings of insecurity. This can result in emotions such as disgust, anger, fear, irritation and surprise. We can only overcome these feelings by confronting the uncanny. To do this, we have to step out of our comfort zone and dare to climb. This can help us to get an overview of the seemingly eerie valley and to broaden our personal horizons.