Welcome to our website!
The BSHS is the main organisation in the British Isles working to bring together people with an interest in the histories of science, technology and medicine and their changing relationship with society.
“To foster understanding of the history and social impact of science, technology and medicine in all their branches in the academic and wider communities, and to provide a national focus for the discipline”
Conferences: the Society’s broadly-themed Annual Conference helps participants from all periods and fields to meet and exchange ideas. The Postgraduate Conference is organised by and for graduate students, while other meetings include collaborative events with a variety of institutions and with our international sister societies.
Members of the BSHS are eligible for benefits, advanced invitation to events & conferences, member networks, discounts on select publications, and electronic access to our journals.
The BSHS is delighted to announce the release of the second in our series of BSHS Translations series. Nils Roll-Hansen's translation of Wilhelm Johannsen's 'About Darwinism, seen from the point of view of the science of heredity' is now freely available on our website. Wilhelm Johannsen is a standard reference in the history of genetics. He clarified the distinction between [...]
In the second post in our series about BSHS Engagement Fellowships, we hear about a project at the George Marshall Medical Museum (GMMM) in Worcester. Laura Mainwaring, PhD student at the University of Leicester, and Louise Price, curator at GMMM, describe their collaboration on local historical research that will complement the touring exhibition “Spanish Flu” (curated by the Florence Nightingale [...]
Over the last three years the BSHS has run Engagement Fellowships. These Fellowships are opportunities for postgraduate students to collaborate with museums, archives and other heritage organisations. The collaborations generate new engagement activities, exhibition content or resources that are based on emerging scholarship in History of Science. Over the next three weeks we will be presenting some of the fantastic [...]
We take the advance of science as given. But how does science really work? Who decides what the public gets to hear about? Are there too few scientists in the world or too many? At the Royal Institution on 1st November, Jeremy Baumberg will discuss how science really works, who decides what the public gets to hear about and sheds light [...]
We at the British Society for the History of Science would like to add our voice to those commemorating the life and work of Dr. Jeff Hughes, our former President (2008-09). His contributions to the history of science and to our organisation will continue to shape our field, and our thoughts are with all of his family, friends, and colleagues. [...]
MUSEUM OF THE HISTORY OF SCIENCE, UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD October – December 2018 DISPLAYS WOMEN IN SCIENCE: Portraits, Archive Material, Trails and Talks Basement Gallery March – December 2018 100 years ago, the first group of women won the right to vote in the UK. In this centenary year, there is widespread recognition of the political role women have played [...]
The Linda Hall Library is now accepting applications for its 2019-20 fellowship program. These fellowships fund research stays in Kansas City, MO lasting between one week and four months for graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and independent scholars in the history of science and related STS fields. The Linda Hall Library offers outstanding primary sources that document the evolution of science, [...]
This is an exciting opportunity to manage one of the best science collections in the UK, leading a team of expert staff. The section includes instruments relating to a range of fields: astronomy, geography, physics, chemistry and others. It also includes biomedicine, computing, and a large photography collection. The post-holder will supply a high level of expertise and experience in [...]
Scheme The International Union of the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, Division of History of Science and Technology (IUHPST/DHST), invites submissions for the fifth DHST Prize for Young Scholars, to be awarded in 2019 and presented in 2021. Initiated at the 22nd International Congress of History of Science in 2005 held in Beijing, the DHST Young Scholar Prize [...]
The University of Gothenburg, Sweden, 15-17th August 2019 What is real and what is fake? And why does it matter? As soon as objects, texts and utterances (be they pragmatic or artistic) become imbued with a sense of authority or authenticity, there is a potential to produce other objects, texts and utterances which mimic and attempt to siphon off that [...]
Call for registration Annual History of Science, Technology and Medicine (HSTM) Network Ireland Conference. 26-27 October 2018 – Queen’s University Belfast (QUB), School of Natural and Built Environment (SNBE). The HSTM Network Ireland cordially invites all interested individuals to attend its 4th annual conference, supported by the Culture and Society research cluster of the SNBE. Composed of a promising [...]
“The Wandering Womb”: Women’s health past and present Exhibition at the Royal College of Nursing Library and Heritage Centre 20 Cavendish Square, London W1G 0RN (18 October 2018 – 15 March 2019) Women have long been viewed as at the mercy of their biology. In the ancient medical world it was believed that a “wandering womb” could cause suffocation [...]
Editor Charlotte Sleigh writes: September’s BJHS is pervaded by themes of public science. Daniel Mitchell’s ‘From Corps to Discipline’ starts us off in nineteenth-century France, where teaching and communication of experimental physics helped form the new, expert science. Following this, Katharine Anderson, examines the strange case of a merchant seaman, an outsider to science, who took Darwin satirically to task [...]
The BSHS Outreach and Education Committee is pleased to announce the opening of its fifth 'Great Exhibitions' competition. This prize is a biennial award for exhibits on the history of science, medicine and technology, kindly funded by the B.Gee bequest. The winner of the 2016 competition was the Adler Planetarium. Chicago, for their display ‘What is a Planet?’. Previous winners [...]
The 2018 BSHS Pickstone Prize has been awarded to Michael Wintroub for his book The Voyage of Thought: Navigating Knowledge across the Sixteenth-Century World (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017) Judge Charlotte Sleigh, editor of the British Journal for the History of Science, described The Voyage of Thought as: ‘Extraordinary. This book changed my perspective on the history of [...]
The Council of the British Society for the History of Science is seeking to gain a better understanding of the extent to which HPS and STS are benefitting from research funding, whether that be for substantive research projects, fellowships, networks, impact projects or studentships. If you have been investigator on a funded research project in the last 10 years, we [...]
Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in Science & Technology Studies Academic Years 2019 - 2021 Cornell University, Ithaca, NY With the sponsorship of the Society for the Humanities, the Department of Science & Technology Studies invites applications for a two-year Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship position beginning July 1, 2019. The fellowship offers a stipend of $53,000/year. Cornell’s Department of Science & Technology Studies [...]
Call for Abstracts British Society for the History of Science Postgraduate Conference 2019 Deadline: 9 November 2018 Location: Department of History and Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge Dates: 10–12 April 2019 Keynote speaker: Dr Sujit Sivasundaram The Department of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS), University of Cambridge, will be hosting the annual British Society for the History of Science Postgraduate conference. This [...]
Marie Skłodowska Curie has been voted the most significant woman in world history in a poll conducted by BBC History magazine. She was nominated by Patricia Fara, President of the British Society for the History of Science. The magazine compiled a shortlist of '100 women who changed the world', chosen by 10 experts, and asked its readers to help rank the [...]
The BSHS is delighted to announce the winner and runner-up for the 2018 Singer Prize, which is awarded every two years to the writer of an unpublished essay, based on original research into any aspect of the history of science, technology or medicine. This year's winner is: Pierre Verschueren, ‘“Great things are done when (Wo)Men & Mountains meet”: The Summer School [...]
Adventures in the Anthropocene by Alexander von Humboldt, father of environmentalism Roger Highfield describes a recent encounter between Royal Society science book prize winners Andrea Wulf and Gaia Vince, held in the Science Museum to celebrate Wulf’s latest literary prize, awarded by the British Society for the History of Science. You can listen to Wulf's lecture here. Alexander von Humboldt [...]
The Royal Society's Lisa Jardine Grant Scheme is named in memory of the eminent British historian Professor Lisa Jardine CBE FRS. The Lisa Jardine Grant Scheme is designed to offer the opportunity for early career scholars to exploit history of science collections, including the Royal Society’s own, in support of their research in the field of intellectual history. The scheme [...]
The British Journal for the History of Science is pleased to announce a new ‘Perspective’ section to appear semi-regularly in the Journal from 2019 onwards. Its contents will take one of three main forms: First, International Advisors of the British Society for the History of Science have been invited to contribute their views on the field in their home or adopted countries. Second, very [...]
The Faculty of Conflict and Catastrophe Medicine & the Faculty of the History and Philosophy of Medicine and Pharmacy are jointly running a one-day symposium: 'Quarantine' This will be held at Apothecaries’ Hall on Thursday, 24th May 2018. For more details, click here. ~ The British Society for the History of Pharmacy & Faculty of the History and Philosophy of [...]
Antony Harwood Literary Agents are actively seeking authors with an interest in public engagement to develop ideas for books and broadcast media projects dedicated to the history of science. Our interest extends across all periods and disciplines, and topics may include biography, the history of ideas, and the social history of science, in particular the role of patronage in supporting [...]
The British Journal for the History of Science (BJHS) is celebrating 50 volumes just as the BSHS celebrates its 70th anniversary. In celebration of this great achievement, Editor Dr. Charlotte Sleigh has commissioned a virtual special issue for which each surviving former editor nominated one favourite paper from their period of tenure. As you can imagine, this takes us way back [...]
Otterden Place, Faversham, Kent By Charlotte Sleigh, University of Kent, with thanks to David Clark. This simple picture below, well known to historians of science, shows one of the earliest experiments in the conductance of ‘Electrick Vertue’, performed in 1729. ‘A’ is oiled, wet thread, supported on silk strands that run between poles C and D. The Vertue is communicated [...]
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BSHS Monographs publishes work of lasting scholarly value that might not otherwise be made available, and it aids the dissemination of innovative projects advancing scholarship or education in the field.