America’s Twice Yearly Exposure to Technology Policy – Saving the Daylight

Most of America has fallen back this morning, moving their clocks one hour earlier at the end of Daylight Savings Time.  While not the first thing that many think of when the topic of technology policy comes up, how we measure time is a very integral technology to our lives.  Whether dealing with the establishment of time zones back in the 19th century, the enforcement of uniformity (all of China is the same time zone), or the dubious attempts to save energy, time is definitely a technology that can be changed to acheive (or attempt to achieve) various policy goals.  But for most of us, it’s a twice yearly chore of changing the clocks and testing the smoke detectors.

For more information on daylight savings time, check out the U.S. Naval Observatory’s resource page.  Other resources about daylight savings time (and associated research questions) include the following:

Ian R. Bartky and Elizabeth Harrison: “Standard and Daylight-saving Time”, Scientific American, May 1979 (Vol. 240, No. 5), pp. 46-53.

There are several articles on the subject – usually focused on the effects of Daylight Savings Time – available through Google Scholar.  Two popular histories of Daylight Savings Time are David Prerau’s Seize the Daylight and Michael Downing’s Spring Forward.


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