Prolegomenon to a Logic for the Information Society

  • Joseph E. Brenner CIRET
Keywords: Cognition, communication, contradiction, dynamic opposition, information and communication technologies (ICTs), information society, logic, morality, reality, society, sustainability, systems theory, transdisciplinarity


The rapid development of information and communication technologies and their applications has stimulated many definitions of an Information Society (IS), and the related concept of a Knowledge-Based Economy (KBE) from the technological, political and economic standpoints. The ethics proposed for the emerging IS has concentrated on reducing inequalities in access to technological developments.
In a key Report, “ICTs and Society”, Hofkirchner et al. (2007) insist that a new evolutionary, descriptive and normative theory “for, about and by means of” the IS is necessary to support emergence of a moral, ecologically and globally sustainable information society - GSIS.
This paper proposes a new kind of logic, a non-propositional, dialectic “Logic in Reality” (LIR), applicable to real systems and phenomena, as the “missing ingredient” required for such a theory. LIR provides new interpretations of morality, self-organization, communication and conflict, grounding them in physical reality and an appropriate information theory.
As a “logic of transdisciplinarity” in the Paris school acceptation, also directed toward the unity of knowledge, LIR confirms that the techno-social field of study of ICTs and Society is a transdiscipline, with direct implications for sustainable development. LIR moves debate beyond the limits imposed by naïve pragmatism and conservative ideologies and can be an essential component of a critical theory.

Author Biography

Joseph E. Brenner, CIRET
Ph. D. in Chemistry, University of Wisconsin. Career in chemical industry. Since 1998, corresponding member International Center for Transdisciplinary Research, Paris (CIRET)