Thomas Gieryn. Cultural Boundaries of Science.
Gieryn's book is an outstanding discussion of the cultural baggage and role that science plays. I recommend reading all of it.
Preface (vii – xii)
Gieryn suggests that scientists (and engineers!) underestimate the authority of their words (and actions, and agendas) downstream (i.e. by the public and by non-technological decision-makers). Do you agree or disagree with this assessment of the apparent, perhaps unintentional, power of the researcher as he or she acts?
Science as boundary work (pp 15 – 18)
I would argue that leading-edge robotics research and engineering is boundary work by Gieryn’s definition. Take a specific sub-discipline within robotics and explain how researchers are defining and redefining the boundary constantly—clothe this sub-discipline within Gieryn’s boundary work framework and explain well.