My main objective is to see how a particular technology instantiates or doesn't instantiate particular ideas of "socially/societally good". I'm more of a technologist, so it would help if someone point to a book or paper outlining the main concepts (and comparing, ideally!). Such work might not exist, so simply laying out the main concepts, which might be obvious to a political or similar philosopher, would also help hugely. Thus far the answer has eluded me.

The question is: What are the main concrete conceptualisations of social/societal good and a good society?

Social/societal good as in, building a hospital is socially good (perhaps). By "good society" I mean a function of X, Y, and Z such that a project maximising the good society function would be considered socially/societally good. For example, Amitai Etzioni's communitarianism work (a concept of a good society) seems to be important, but I am unsure how it relates to other work (e.g., Rawls).

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    You may want to read some of Karl Mannheim's work in his British phase. ""Man and Society in an Age of Reconstruction" 1935 (merely cited as an example) in which he argues for a shift from liberal order of laissez-faire capitalism, "founded on the unregulated trade cycle, unextended democracy, free competition and ideas of competitive individualism" to planned democracy." Wikipedia, Karl Mannheim. If we don't do something like this, then I think the Chinese will leave the West behind in the dust.
    – Gordon
    Dec 19 '17 at 15:30
  • If we assumed, for example, that planning will become more necessary in the future. Title: The Earth : natural resources and human intervention Author Schmidt-Bleek, F. Publisher:Haus Pub.,Pub date:2009.
    – Gordon
    Dec 19 '17 at 15:44
  • What are you contrasting a 'concrete' conceptualisation with ? What's a non-concrete conceptualisation ? An abstract conceptualisation ? But abstraction is built to some degree into any conceptualisation. Your question interests me but what makes (say) Etzioni's work 'concrete' ? If you could point to some - any - of its characteristics we might have a better handle on what you are looking for. This is not a put-down; I'm just trying to see just what you are looking for.
    – Geoffrey Thomas
    Feb 5 '18 at 9:52

Societal good is that which promotes/establishes opportunities for everyone in the society to experience their inalienable rights to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and access to the common good. That which unnecessarily interferes with, threatens, or prevents those rights opportunities either deliberately or negligence, is contrary to the societal/social good. For details, read Inalienable Rights versus Abuse: a Commonsense Approach to Public Policy by R.Q. Public.

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