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Scientific Governance in Britain, 1914-79 provides a ‘big picture’ account of science in modern Britain. It charts the changing contours of science and illuminates its role in governing the nation. The twentieth century saw a dramatic increase in publicly funded research and the number of scientific advisors across government. At the same time science was evoked in the pursuit of the effective and rational management of people and resources – of making policies and achieving Britain’s goals. Spanning fifteen essays, this book examines the connected histories of how science itself was governed, and how it was used in governance. Individually these contributions reveal a breadth of perspectives on the relationship between science and governance. Taken together they connect the many people involved in, and affected by, science in twentieth-century Britain. Essays on the governance of science include topics such as the establishment and functioning of new governmental departments and agencies, as well as the (sometimes uncertain) responses of pre-existing scientific bodies, notably the Royal Society. Operational Research features prominently as the model for later structures. Topics treated under the theme of governance by science include specific elaborations of the sometimes vague-seeming rhetoric of science’s rational fitness as a modus operandi. More concrete ambitions for science are explored in relation to broadcasting, psychology, sociology and education. The essays in this volume combine the latest research on twentieth-century British science with insightful discussion of what it meant to govern – and govern with – science.

Surveying the North Sea in the Cold War
Leucha Veneer

In the mid-1960s the British Government began issuing commercial licences for the exploration of the North Sea for gas and oil. Companies were required to share their geophysical findings with the Ministry of Power, and by 1967 officials in the Ministry were aware that they had a great deal of geological information they could neither analyse nor control. They were also aware that the first licenses would expire in 1970, at which time the Ministry would need to know the value of the licensed areas as another round of licensing began. The Institute of Geological Sciences (now the British Geological Survey) was therefore instructed to begin a rapid survey of the geology of the North Sea on behalf of the Ministry. This expansion of the Institute’s functions shaped it over the following decade, recast relations between ministries and scientific experts, and had long-term implications for the funding of ‘pure’ and ‘applied’ science in Britain.

in Scientific governance in Britain, 1914–79
Governing science in the Royal Navy
Don Leggett

Board of Invention and Research’, 21 September 1917. 39 Admiralty papers, The National Archives, Kew, ADM 293/8, 3. 40 William Wordsworth Fisher papers, National Maritime Museum, London, FHR 7, J.J. Thomson, Ernest Rutherford and Richard Therlfall to Charles Merz, 15 May 1918. 41 For the contested nature of pure and applied science at this time see Graeme Gooday, ‘“Vague and artificial”: the historically elusive distinction between pure and applied science’, Isis, 103 (2012), 546–54; Sabine Clarke, ‘Pure science with a practical aim: the meanings of fundamental

in Scientific governance in Britain, 1914–79
Abstract only
John M. MacKenzie

power. But it would surely be wrong to create too rigid a distinction between ‘receivers’ and ‘doers’. To do so would be to accept a contrast between ‘knowledge for its own sake’ and ‘knowledge for power’ (even self-improvement, after all, has its instrumental side) or, put another way, a separation among the ‘doers’ of ‘pureandappliedscience. The latter has often been

in Imperialism and the natural world
Abstract only
Tamson Pietsch

institutions abroad. Settler universities undertook these changes in the context of a British university sector that was only reluctantly accommodating itself to the demands of the modern world. The expanding institutions in the settler colonies, with their relatively high salaries, professorial appointments, and openness to the professions and to pure and applied science, offered opportunities to aspiring

in Empire of scholars
The British Association in South Africa, 1905 and 1929
Saul Dubo

the development of scientific work in South Africa, as well as to the generosity of the South African hosts. The papers delivered by the Association’s visitors covered a typically wide range of subjects and the characteristic balance between pure and applied science was consciously maintained. Papers with a particularly South African focus were prepared for publication in four special volumes (with

in Science and society in southern Africa
Joris Vandendriessche

the distinction between pure and applied science was created as a means of establishing a hierarchical relation between academic science and traditions of technical knowledge, in which the latter could be presented as the result of the former, a mere application of previously conducted ‘pure’ research.97 Public health experts had good reasons for stepping into such a hierarchy. Even if the label of an applied science confirmed the primacy of academics, it still provided experts with a scientific legitimization of their studies. The bacteriologist Edmond Trétrôp

in Medical societies and scientific culture in nineteenth-century Belgium
Localising ‘universal’ learning
Tamson Pietsch

three universities (together with the University of Adelaide) were able to take degrees in the pure and applied science subjects that were coming to be seen as crucial to colonial development. Change of this nature in Canada was more halting, and despite being on the books at Victoria from 1875 and Dalhousie from 1878, degrees in science were not generally offered in Canadian

in Empire of scholars
Programming academic fields
Alice Garner and Diane Kirkby

. The final spot on the list was taken by the extremely broad ‘project’ of ‘Pure and Applied Science’. These changes are evidence of ongoing and (one imagines) robust discussions about the merits of the various areas of research and teaching, between board members representing academia, business and government. When board members discussed the universities’ responses to the proposed 1955 fields, they noted that the number one project area, Increased Productivity, had received the largest number of proposals. But these varied widely, and included recommendations in

in Academic ambassadors, Pacific allies
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Pairs of personae in nineteenth-century German historiography
Herman Paul

’, Low Countries Historical Review, 131:4 (2016), 33–54. See also Richard Kirwan, ‘Introduction: scholarly self-fashioning and the cultural history of universities’, in Kirwan (ed.), Scholarly Self-Fashioning and Community in the Early Modern University (Farnham: Ashgate, 2013), pp 1–20. 49 Fernand Braudel, ‘Histoire et sciences sociales: la longue durée’, Annales, 13 (1958), 725–53. 50 Paul Lucier, ‘The origins of pure and applied science in gilded age America’, Isis, 103 (2012), 527–36; R. Steven Turner, ‘Historicism, Kritik and the Prussian professorate, 1790 to

in How to be a historian