Society, Information

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Summary

A human society is a group of people involved in persistent interpersonal relationships, or a large social grouping sharing the same geographical or social territory, typically subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations. Human societies are characterized by patterns of relationships (social relations) between individuals who share a distinctive culture and institutions; a given society may be described as the sum total of such relationships among its constituent members. In the social sciences, a larger society often evinces stratification or dominance patterns in subgroups.

Details

Although the concept of information society has been under discussion since the 1930s, in the modern world it is almost always applied to the manner in which information technologies have impacted society and culture. It therefore covers the effects of computers and telecommunications on the home, the workplace, schools, government, and various communities and organizations, as well as the emergence of new social forms in cyberspace.

One of the European Union's areas of interest is the information society. Here policies are directed towards promoting an open and competitive digital economy, research into information and communication technologies, as well as their application to improve social inclusion, public services, and quality of life.

The International Telecommunications Union's World Summit on the Information Society in Geneva and Tunis (2003 and 2005) has led to a number of policy and application areas where action is required. These include:

  • promotion of ICTs for development;
  • information and communication infrastructure;
  • access to information and knowledge;
  • capacity building;
  • building confidence and security in the use of ICTs;
  • enabling environment;
  • ICT applications in the areas of government, business, learning, health, employment, environment, agriculture and science;
  • cultural and linguistic diversity and local content;
  • media;
  • ethical dimensions of the information society; and
  • international and regional cooperation.

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External Links

  • WikipediaDefinition of SocietyLecture notes on "Defining Society"Internet Modern History Sourcebook: Industrial Revolution

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