Technology, Knowledge, & Society International Award for Excellence

The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society offers an annual award for newly published research or thinking that has been recognized to be outstanding by members of the Technology, Knowledge & Society Research Network.

Award Recipients for Volume 16

Opportunities and Threats of the Fourth Industrial Revolution on the Quantity Surveying Profession in South Africa

Since the First Industrial Revolution, societies have entrusted their lives and wellbeing to professional organizations; social institutions that exercise control over the use of specific bodies of knowledge. These institutions are granted privileges based on the benefit to society this knowledge brings. The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) contests the role of these professions in society. Using the quantity surveying profession as an example, this article highlights the threats and opportunities 4IR presents to professions and how this may have an impact on their relevance in society. This article is based on a literature review that specifically interrogates the role of professions in society and explores how their role has evolved. The study evaluates how those technologies associated with 4IR (such as artificial intelligence [AI], robotics, the Internet of Things [IoT], 3D-printing, blockchain, nanotechnology, etc.) will have a direct impact on the existing legitimacy and practices of the quantity surveying profession. The article will focus specifically on the opportunities and threats posed by AI in South Africa, particularly the existential threat to the concept of professional judgement, and AI’s challenge to the status quo of quantity surveying and its role in society. General opinion regarding AI is that it is capable of performing professional tasks far quicker and at a much higher quality than those for whom this was previously regarded as their purview—highly trained and educated professionals. In some quarters, AI is regarded as an enhancer to humans, while in others it is regarded as a substitute for humans. What remains unknown is the extent to which AI is likely to cause disruptions within these professions.

Past Award Winners

Volume 14

Exploring Machine Learning’s Contributions to Economic Productivity and Innovation.

Christopher Alex Hooton and Davin Kaing, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp. 1-25.


Volume 13

Cyber-infrastructure and the Right to the City

Shannon Jackson, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp. 27-40.


Volume 12

Tech in Europe: Cultural Reboot

Peter DePietro, Journal of Technologies in Society Volume 12, Issue 2, pp. 21-30.



Volume 11

How Ageism Contributes to the Second-Level Digital Divide: The Case of Canadian Seniors

Martine Lagacé, Houssein Charmarkeh, Joelle Laplante, Annick Tanguay, Journal of Technologies and Human Usability , Volume 11, Issue 4, pp. 1-13.


Volume 10

Story Telling and the Dissolution of Categories

Ellen McCabe, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society: Annual Review, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp.15-23


Volume 9

State Parties 2.0: Facebook, Campaigns, and Elections

Marija Bekafigo, Diana Cohen, Jason Gainous, and Kevin Wagner, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp.99-112


Volume 8

The Collaborative-geomatics Informatics Tool: Engaging Youth Using Place-based Education

Andrea D. Isogai, Dr. Daniel D. McCarthy, Jim D. Karagatzides, Skye Vandenberg, Holly Gardner, Vicky Edwards, Dr. Don Cowan, and Dr. Leonard J. S. Tsuji, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp.131-142


Volume 7

The (Broken?) Promise of Digital Democracy: An Early Assessment

John Branstetter, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 7, Issue 3, pp.151-162


Volume 6

Threadbearers: The Disseminators of Technology

Charles Harding, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 6, Issue 2, pp.141-150


Volume 5

Modern Time: Photography and Temporality

Kris Belden-Adams, The International Journal of Technology, Knowledge, and Society, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp.25-42