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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Science Communication in 20th Century Europe

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | Projekte | Science Communication in 20th Century Europe | Putting Science on the Air in Europe, 1920s to 1980s

Putting Science on the Air in Europe, 1920s to 1980s

ESF Exploratory Workshop EW11-139 | May 3-5, 2012 | Luisenstr. 56, Humboldt Graduate School

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General Objective

The workshop aims at exploring key issues of science communication in the 20th century. As it were primarily radio and television that created the prevalent experience of a "knowledge society" both history of science and media studies need to extend their current foci, i.e. beyond restrictions to print and the19th century and towards attention to the fields of science and technology, resp. The different political, economic and cultural forces that interacted in this "scientification" of the European societies can be exhibited and analysed fully only by investigating the processes of putting science on the air in comparative studies.




Summaries of the TalksPoster


Programme (pdf)


Poster (pdf)             


Practical Information










Map workshop locationLuisenstr. 56













Workshop outline

Day 1: Is History of Science Prepared for Science on the Air?

14.00-14.30    Introduction

14.30-16.30    I. Histories of Radio and Television

17.00-19.00    II. Historiographical trends in science communication

Day 2: Exploring the European Perspectives of Science on the Air

08.30-10.30    III. British vs. French models of science on the air

11.00-13.00    IV. German vs. Eastern European models of science on the air

14.30-16.30    V. From independent amateur radio science to authoritarian propaganda
17.00-19.00    VI. Centre and Periphery – did it matter for mediatisation of science?

Day 3: Historical Lessons on Media and Science Understanding

08.30-10.30    VII. Media changes, changes of genre

11.00-13.00    VIII. Science understanding in context

14.30-16.00    IX. Next Steps






  • Safia Azzouni, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • Andrée Bergeron, École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris
  • Peter Bowler, University of Belfast/Cambridge
  • Timothy Boon, Science Museum, London
  • Ralph Desmarais, Imperial College, London
  • Kostas Gavroglu, University of Athens
  • Tomasz Goban-Klas, University of Krakow
  • Paola Govoni, Universita di Bologna
  • Jürg Häusermann, Universität Tübingen
  • Néstor Herran, Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris
  • Oliver Hochadel, CSIC, Barcelona
  • Merav Katz-Kimchi, UC Berkeley
  • Markus Lehmkuhl, Freie Universität Berlin
  • Agustí Nieto-Galan, Universitat Autonoma, Barcelona
  • Gabor Pallo, Hungarian Academy Sciences, Budapest
  • Faidra Papanelopoulou, University of Athens
  • Daniel Raichvarg, Université de Bourgogne, Dijon
  • Arne Schirrmacher, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • Ana Simões, Universidade de Lisboa
  • Ana-Paula Silva, Universidade de Lisboa
  • Carlos Tabernero, Universitat Autonoma, Barcelona
  • Barbara Wurm, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • Leszek Zasztowt, Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw