Despite tremendous economic growth rates, especially in rural areas of South Africa and in its neighbouring countries, there is still a subsistence economy predominant. Thus, access to simple and wealth-generating technologies, that makes life easier, is sometimes difficult.
The proposed project is based on the hypothesis that reversible technologies, which can in principle be “dismantled” and replaced by other technologies without economic and societal damage or disadvantages, could contribute to a reduction of technological and social complexity and a more sustainable civil society. Furthermore, such reversible technologies could support the protection of the environment, and the development of ecological indicators. Moreover, they offer better, discrimination-free access to everyday technology.
The characteristics of reversibility are to be examined in more detail concerning questions of the Philosophy of Technology, the question of modelling such technologies with the help of analytical systems theory and with respect to ethical questions. The discussion will refer to existing as well as future technologies that are important for emerging and newly industrialized countries such as energy supply, circular economy, digitalisation, and others.