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Appears in:
Pages: 1018-1022
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-608-8860-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1206

Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain

SOCIO-TECHNICAL SYSTEM DESIGN – AN INTERDISCIPLINARY SEMINAR FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF SOCIO-TECHNICAL COMPETENCIES FOR THE INCREASING COMPLEXITY OF PRODUCTION SYSTEMS

M. Löhrer1, D. Kerpen2, J. Lemm1

1Institut für Textiltechnik der RWTH Aachen University (GERMANY)
2Institut für Soziologie der RWTH Aachen University (GERMANY)
When sociologists talk about socio-technical systems, they want to emphasize the interdependence of the technical and the social. According to this understanding, technological development means that various heterogeneous factors, e.g. social, technical, economic, and legal factors, interact with each other. In other words, the technical and the social are interconnected in various technization phases, which can be observed in the current digital transformation of both our work and everyday world – keywords are, among others, the Internet of Things (IoT), big/smart data, industry/work 4.0.

Besides the digitalization of the workplace, which is a social megatrend, it is necessary to take increasing staff diversity into consideration, caused by demographic change and globalization, as increasingly complex production systems affect all employees individually (individual needs derive from age, language barrier etc.). The textile industry is representative of the aforementioned effects: a notably aging staff (55+) as well as other aspects of diversity in conjunction with the increasing complexity concerning operation and maintenance of machines is observable.

Against this background, the junior research group “SozioTex – new socio-technical systems in the textile industry” received a 5-year grant, which started in November 2014, from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) in the funding initiative “Interdisciplinary development of expertise with the research focus on human-machine interaction regarding demographic change”. At the Institut für Textiltechnik (ITA) der RWTH Aachen University, the aforementioned interdisciplinary research group, made up of engineers, sociologists and education scientists, develops and evaluates potential assistance systems that assist employees in increasingly complex working situations.

To ensure high acceptance rates, the employees are included into the development process from the beginning, e.g. by being surveyed about their individual needs regarding assistance. This interdisciplinary user-orientated research and development is passed on to students of the humanities and social sciences by offering them a seminar called “Socio-technical System Design”, in which the junior researchers of SozioTex give an insight into their research contents and offer practical phases, which are held in the technical center of Institut für Textiltechnik (ITA) der RWTH Aachen University.

The students are not only trained in the fundamental methods of empirical social research, but especially learn sociological approaches to acceptance research and participation methods and they have the chance to test these methods in practice-oriented project work. The results of such project work form the basis for further individual work required to pass the seminar (presentations, abstracts, term papers).
@InProceedings{LOHRER2016SOC,
author = {L{\"{o}}hrer, M. and Kerpen, D. and Lemm, J.},
title = {SOCIO-TECHNICAL SYSTEM DESIGN – AN INTERDISCIPLINARY SEMINAR FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF SOCIO-TECHNICAL COMPETENCIES FOR THE INCREASING COMPLEXITY OF PRODUCTION SYSTEMS},
series = {8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN16 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-8860-4},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2016.1206},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2016.1206},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {4-6 July, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {1018-1022}}
TY - CONF
AU - M. Löhrer AU - D. Kerpen AU - J. Lemm
TI - SOCIO-TECHNICAL SYSTEM DESIGN – AN INTERDISCIPLINARY SEMINAR FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF SOCIO-TECHNICAL COMPETENCIES FOR THE INCREASING COMPLEXITY OF PRODUCTION SYSTEMS
SN - 978-84-608-8860-4/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1206
PY - 2016
Y1 - 4-6 July, 2016
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN16 Proceedings
SP - 1018
EP - 1022
ER -
M. Löhrer, D. Kerpen, J. Lemm (2016) SOCIO-TECHNICAL SYSTEM DESIGN – AN INTERDISCIPLINARY SEMINAR FOR THE CONSTRUCTION OF SOCIO-TECHNICAL COMPETENCIES FOR THE INCREASING COMPLEXITY OF PRODUCTION SYSTEMS, EDULEARN16 Proceedings, pp. 1018-1022.
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