Roth S., Dahms H., Welz F., and Cattacin S. (2019), Print theories of computer societies. Introduction to the digital transformation of social theory, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Vol. 149, 119778 [SSCI 3.815, Scopus, CNRS***, CABS***, VHB***].
- The digital transformation is fundamentally changing research contexts and conditions in the social sciences and humanities.
- The vast majority of social theorists are computer illiterates.
- Computer illiterate social theorists produce analogue theories of digital societies.
- A research agenda on the threats and opportunities of a digital transformation of social theory is required.
Abstract: ICT and the increasing availability of digital data are dramatically changing the processes of research and knowledge production in the social sciences and humanities (SSH). Whereas the methodological momentum in digital humanities and computational social sciences is already immense, theory development in the SSH is much less dynamic and consists mainly of digital resurrections of the classics of our fields. The contributions to this virtual special issue of Technological Forecasting and Social Change do, therefore, not constitute efforts at presenting new social theories of the digital transformation, but rather, efforts at digitally transforming social theory. This introduction presents an overview of the topic and the contributions and outlines key elements of a research agenda on the digital transformation of social theory.
Keywords: Digital transformation; social theory; digital theory; theory programmes.