VISU Vienna Summer University 2012 - Scientific World Conceptions

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VISU 2012 - Applied Science. Historical, Epistemological, and Institutional Characteristics

The 12th Vienna Summer University was held on July 2 13, 2012.

The lecturers were:
Martin Carrier (Bielefeld University)
Rose-Mary Sargent (Merrimack College)
Peter Weingart (Bielefeld University)



In the course of the twentieth century, science became increasingly intertwined with technology and matters of social relevance. As a result, science is viewed today as an essentially practical endeavor. Science and technology appear inextricably interwoven with one another. This development is viewed in many quarters as a fundamental reorientation of science and its relationship with technology. Science in the context of practice is assumed to operate under conditions significantly different from the rules and regulations of traditional academia.
Here are three overlapping themes in the course that deal with the topic from a historical, philosophical, and sociological perspective, respectively. The issue involves methodological and epistemological questions concerning research in the service of technological development as well as sociological questions about the institutional characteristics such research acquires. These questions give rise to various contrasts and oppositions such as commissioned research versus research in the public interest, epistemic research versus application-oriented research, research under the aegis of the linear model versus applied research.

The lectures dealt with the following topics:
Nationalism, Commercialism, and Popularization (17501840)
Utilitarianism, Positivism, and Victorian Society (18401900)
The Professionalization of Science, Logical Empiricism, and the Rhetoric of Pure Science (19001950)
National Politics and the Commodification of Science (19502000)
Beyond 2000: A Reassessment of the Concept of Science in the Public Interest
Values and Objectivity in Science
Theories for Use: The conceptual structure of research in the context of application
On the Question Dynamics of Research: Modes of Finding and Losing Research Topics in Science and Technology
Science in the Grip of the Economy? Conditions of applicationoriented research
Epistemic and Social Conditions of Scientific Expertise
Knowledge, Politics and Commerce: The ethical dimension
The self-referential direction of research
Institutional patterns for basic and applied research
Origins of the linear model and the innovation paradigm
National Innovation Systems the concept, comparative perspective
Science funding or innovation policy?




Participants of VISU 2012




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