Tag Archives: Europe

Book : Imperial Technoscience by Amit Prasad


The origin of modern science is often located in Europe and the West. This Euro/West-centrism relegates emergent practices elsewhere to the periphery, undergirding analyses of contemporary transnational science and technology with traditional but now untenable hierarchical categories. In this book, Amit Prasad examines features of transnationality in science and technology through a study of MRI research and development in the United States, Britain, and India. In an analysis that is both theoretically nuanced and empirically robust, Prasad unravels the entangled genealogies of MRI research, practice, and culture in these three countries.
Prasad follows sociotechnical trails in relation to five aspects of MRI research: invention, industrial development, market, history, and culture. He first examines the well-known dispute between American scientists Paul Lauterbur and Raymond Damadian over the invention of MRI, then describes the post-invention emergence of the technology, as the center of MRI research shifted from Britain to the U.S; the marketing of the MRI and the transformation of MRI research into a corporate-powered “Big Science”; and MRI research in India, beginning with work in India’s nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) laboratories in the 1940s. Finally, he explores the different dominant technocultures in each of the three countries, analyzing scientific cultures as shifting products of transnational histories rather than static products of national scientific identities and cultures. Prasad’s analysis offers not only an innovative contribution to current debates within science and technology studies but also an original postcolonial perspective on the history of cutting-edge medical technology.


Book : Engineers and the Making of Francoist Regime

 In this book, Lino Camprubí argues that  science and technology were at the very center of the building of Franco’s Spain. Previous histories of early Francoist science and technology have described scientists and engineers as working “under” Francoism, subject to censorship and bound by politically mandated research agendas. Camprubí offers a different perspective, considering instead scientists’ and engineers’ active roles in producing those political mandates. Many scientists and engineers had been exiled, imprisoned, or executed by the regime. Camprubí argues that those who remained made concrete the mission of “redemption” that Franco had invented for himself. This gave them the opportunity to become key actors—and mid-level decision makers—within the regime.

Camprubí describes a series of projects across Spain undertaken by the civil engineers and agricultural scientists who placed themselves at the center of their country’s forced modernization. These include a coal silo, built in 1953, viewed as an embodiment of Spain’s industrialized landscape; links between laboratories, architects, and the national Catholic church (and between technology and authoritarian control); vertically organized rice production and research on genetics; river management and the contested meanings of self-sufficiency; and the circulation of construction standards by mobile laboratories as an engine for European integration. Separately, each chapter offers a fascinating microhistory that illustrates the coevolution of Francoist science, technology, and politics. Taken together, they reveal networks of people, institutions, knowledge, artifacts, and technological systems woven together to form a new state.


Call for Papers : The EU and the Emerging Powers


April 2015, Brussels

The Political Sciences Louvain-Europe Institute of the Université catholique de Louvain, the Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies of the University of Leuven, the Center for International Relations Studies of the Department of Political Science of the University of Liège, the Department of Political Science of Ghent University, the Institute for European Studies of the Université Libre de Bruxelles, the Institute for European studies of the Saint Louis University Brussels and the Madariaga College of Europe Foundation invite experts to contribute a paper which focuses on the relations between the European Union and emerging powers. The papers will be presented at an International Conference that will take place in Brussels in the last week  of April 2015.

Call for Papers available here

Deadline for Submission of Paper Proposals: 10th of November 2014

Registration & Abstract Submission here

Séminaire EHESS : Les ingénieurs face à la société, un jeu de miroirs, XIXe-XXe siècles

Claudine Fontanon, maître de conférences, EHESS 

Irina Gouzevitch, ingénieure d’études, EHESS

2e et 4e vendredis du mois de 10 h à 12 h (salle 2, RdC, bât. Le France, 190-198 av de France 75013 Paris),du 8 novembre 2013 au 13 juin 2014. Pas de séance le 9 mai

L’interaction de l’ingénieur avec la société est un élément identitaire fort de la profession. D’une part, les ingénieurs cherchent à se positionner par rapport à la société et à s’y faire une place appropriée en élaborant des modes d’affirmation de leur statut social propre et en se fabriquant une image qu’ils souhaitent renvoyer. Pour ce faire, d’une part ils créent des associations professionnelles aptes à défendre leurs intérêts mais de l’autre, ils investissent d’autres branches d’activité où ils essaient d’appliquer et de faire valoir leurs méthodes rationnelles d’intervention, de règlementation et d’efficacité.

Book: The Chemical Industry in Europe

Ernst Homburg, Anthony S. Travis, Harm G. Schröter (eds), The Chemical Industry in Europe, 1850-1914: Industrial Growth, Pollution and Professionalization, Dordrecht, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1998

“This book analyses the development of the chemical industry during the Second Industrial Revolution in a large number of European countries. It is the first book-length study of the European chemical industry that pays proper attention to the importance of environmental issues, and to the role of the chemical profession both in industrial and in environmental matters. It is intended for a large audience of historians of technology and chemistry, social historians, economic and business historians, and historians of the environment.”

Contributors:  Ernst Homburg, Anthony S. Travis, Christian Simon, Hans Jorgen Styhr Petersen, Paolo Amat di San Filippo, Roman Mierzecki, Anders Lundgren, Harm G. Schröter,Sarah Wilmot, Peter Reed, Arne Andersen, James Donnelly, Stuart Bennett, Carsten Reinhardt, Wolfgang Wimmer, Gérard Emptoz, Anne-Claire Déré