Pandemic Recovery Requires Post-Normal Science | Issues in Science and Technology

In world-historical terms we also see periodic collapse and regeneration. A half-millennium of European economic and cultural expansion came to its end with the Great War. Its American extension has been brief, and the twin crises of the Great Recession of 2007–2008 and the coronavirus have now left the US heartland financially debilitated. The initial conquest of the Western hemisphere was facilitated by the susceptibility of indigenous peoples to European microbes. Now we all suffer in turn because the consensus among rulers of leading nations about the importance of economic liberalism has created a culture so devoted to being economically efficient that it had no way to prepare for inevitable new microbial perils.

Normal science, with its fantasy of reduction of all qualities to numbers, has functioned both as the method and ideology of this self-destructive regime. Any “new normal” regime that seeks to resuscitate this fantasy will blunder into its same failings. Can we learn from COVID-19 and move to a post-normal science conception of knowledge and its place in the world?
— Read on issues.org/post-normal-science-for-pandemic-recovery/