In sociology, industrial society refers to a society with a modern societal structure. Such a structure developed in the west in the period of time following the industrial revolution. Pre-modern or pre-industrial societies are also called agricultural societies.
Some theoreticians -- namely Ulrich Beck, Anthony Giddens and Manuel Castells -- argue that we are located in the middle of a transformation or transition from industrian socities to post-modern societies. The triggering technology for the change from an agricultural to an industrial organisation was steam power, allowing mass production and reducing the argicultural work necessary. Identified as catalyst or trigger for the transition to post-modern or informational society is global information technology.