PHoSTEM: The Public History of Science, Technology, Engineering and Medicine
This project aims to understand how to increase and improve public engagement with the history of science. To do this, IPUP has embarked on a joint enterprise with the Science Museum London, and the Centre for the History & Philosophy of Science, University of Leeds and won funding from the AHRC for a Research Network. During 2012 and 2013 workshops will be organised at each of the three institutions that allow practitioners, academics, and the public to come together and think through how curatorial best practice can promote greater public inclusivity with the historical narrative of science and technology. There will also be a summative public event.
There has developed in recent years a significant gap in not only the public understandings of technology, but also a lack of awareness about the history behind science, even whilst our everyday lives become more and more enmeshed with digital and technological objects.
Yet museums of science and technology have outstanding collections of relevant material, and many years of experience in brilliantly communicating the enchantment of science more generally. How might practitioners use new curatorial techniques of public engagement and outreach to widen interest and involvement in the history of science and technology?
Through the discussion workshops a series of solutions will be proposed that seek to enhance public engagement in the history of science, so that visitor interest in the topic increases, giving people a better connection to the technological world and an increase$d understanding of how science has and will shape their lives. The workshops will prioritise the exploration of interpretation and participatory practices, especially those utilising digital platforms.
For an overview of the project, see Tim Boon’s article on ‘Co-curation and the Public History of Science and Technology’.
There will be three events organized under the funding from AHRC research network followed by a public event funded by the Science Museum Group.
IPUP has organized the first PHoSTEM event in the series on the theme of "Cultural Change, Material Culture and Public History - Understanding, Involvement, Participation, and Widening Public Engagement", held on Friday 7th December, 2012. This AHRC workshop was held on Friday 7th December, 11am to 6.30pm, at the National Railway Museum, York.
The Centre for the History & Philosophy of Science, University of Leeds has organized the second PHoSTEM event on the theme of "Understanding, Involvement, Participation, and Widening Public Engagement". This AHRC workshop was held on Friday 18th January, 10am to 5.30pm, at the Brotherton Library, University of Leeds, LS2 9JT.
The Science Museum has organized the third PHoSTEM event on the theme of "Is Science a Special Case in Museology". This AHRC workshop will be held on Saturday 13th April, 10am to 5.30pm, at the Dana Centre, The Science Museum, Queen’s Gate, London, SW7 5HD..
All Welcome! To sign-up to participate, please email us at: email@example.com.
Programme forthcoming here.
Academics participating with the project at York include: