A new book edited by a Missouri University of Science and Technology researcher discusses the ways communication and developing technologies can improve global food and water safety. In-depth interviews with food industry experts reveal the slow acceptance of new technology and the subconscious ways that people judge food when making purchases.
Dr. David Wright, an associate professor of English and technical communication at Missouri S&T, recently published an edited volume titled “Communication Practices in Engineering, Manufacturing, and Research for Food and Water Safety.” The book was published by Wiley-IEEE Press.
The book covers topics such as the history of muckraking in the food industry, a case study on stormwater regulation, and interviews with members of the beef and livestock industry. It also provides a historical background on disease outbreaks and public resistance, as well as how best to educate youths and potential professionals in the field.
“The book looks at how technology diffusion, the spread of new technology usage, impacts the decisions people are making in terms of food safety,” says Wright. “It touches on a wide variety of topics in the field. Past literature, current education efforts and field studies all combine to show the whole picture of how people make these decisions.”
Wright also wrote a chapter in the book titled “Cowboys and Computers: Communicating National Animal Identification in the Beef Industry.” The chapter examines the slow acceptance of animal identification by members of the beef industry.
The book also features articles by two other Missouri S&T faculty. Dr. Edward Malone, a professor of English and technical communication, and Dr. Kathryn Dolan, an assistant professor of English and technical communication, contributed to the work.
Wright is a member of the IEEE Professional Communication Society and the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing. He earned his Ph.D. in technical communication from Oklahoma State University in 2007.