Long Term Development of Science and Technology

Long Term Development of Science and Technology


In the course modern sciences are positioned as part of long term developments within science and society to understand the present situation. In this long term perspective on the development of knowledge production, ‘past’ and ‘present’ are compared to understand what heterogeneity is and how science, technology and society interact. Important question is how the production and diffusion of knowledge develops within different time periods to determine differences, similarities, patterns and trends. In this way the course aims at increasing insight in knowledge production and innovation


The central theme in this course is knowledge production. Attention to this theme is relevant for AT students because their study exceeds traditional science and engineering disciplines as it is directed at technological innovation. Within technological innovation academic disciplines, scientists, engineers, managers, policy makers, brokers, consultants, stakeholders, firms, Universities and State Institutions are involved. As a result, there does not exist a clear-cut nor an unambiguous criterium to evaluate knowledge products. Knowledge production is thus pluriform, or, restated, heterogeneous. This means that there are different ways of knowledge production, both diachronically (or historically) and synchronically at different places. In both instances, knowledge is produced within different (professional, institutional and cultural) contexts in various ways.

The course offers insight in the dynamics of heterogeneous knowledge production, while simultaneously showing that research  is not identical with ‘anything goes’. In order to increase insight in and to get a better grip on processes of heterogeneous knowledge production, a number of analytical concepts are introduced that surpass disciplinary thinking: key figures (in knowledge production), practices (of knowledge production), places (of knowledge production) and (knowledge production in) circulation.

Contact: Dr. A.A. Albert de la Bruhèze