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Limity technologického optimismu z pohledu sociální gerontologie

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Title in English Limits of technological optimism as seen by the social gerontology


Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Proceedings
Conference Stárnutí 2021 : Sborník příspěvků z 5. gerontologické mezioborové konference
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Web Sborník_fulltext
Keywords gerontechnology; technological optimism; robot; Pepper; HUMR
Description Demographic change in the world's populations, which is contributing to an unprece-dented increase in the proportion and number of older people over time, is coinciding with equally unprecedented technological developments in software, hardware and communication technologies. There is an almost universal consensus that technological development could be the answer to some of the burning issues of aging societies. Increasing labour productivity could cover the expected shortage of young labour or smart solutions to support forms of care for de-pendent seniors. For example, measures taken by companies in the global north as part of measures against the spread of coronavirus infection had an additional "push" effect. In an effort to provide alternative ways of working, society has supported, offered and sometimes required to implement ICT solutions in various areas of social life, including e-government, e-health and telemedicine, online education and communication in families and in the context of care institu-tions. Without comparative empirical data at this time, it seems that there has been an accelera-tion, acceleration, adaptation of new ICT solutions by many seniors who have been "traditional-ly" considered digital migrants, people on the other hand, digital abyss. In summary, it might seem that we have reason for so-called technological optimism, ie the feeling that technologies are useful, safe, accessible and rapidly evolving so that they are usable by all and welcomed to the extent that they can avert negative effects of human existence and action. In the original sense, the concept of technological optimism was an alternative to today's discourses of sustain-able development in the face of the population boom. The use of technologies to cope with the coming problems of post-war baby booms and their children in the later stages of their lives is thus a kind of conceptual offshoot of these now highly problematic approaches. In this paper I will focus on selected limits of gero (nto) technological optimism. Based on a review of the literature and the preliminary results of the HUMR project, I set out the arguments why technological progress may not be the desired solution to the problems of aging societies. For discussion, I offer concepts ranging from technological ageism in the de-sign and marketing of modern technologies and to the bearers; for various effects, such as the escalator effect, i.e. the synchronization of adaptation to new technologies and generational ex-changes; the "Grandmother" effect, i.e. the concept of seniors as protectors of traditions and old ways; the effect of objective learning limits; the effect of competitive everyday content; the ef-fect of technological inadequacy; the effect of rapid obsolescence or the effect of cultural and value settings of non-users. These multi-source and mutually reinforcing influences then shed new light on the role of technology in the process of individual and demographic aging and their experience.
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