On the philosophical roots of today’s science policy: Any lessons from the “Lysenko affair”?

Studies in East European Thought 67 (1):91-109 (2015)
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Present science policy discourse is focused on a broad concept of “techno-science” and emphasizes practical economic goals and gains. At the same time scientists are worried about the freedom of research and the autonomy of science. Half a century ago the difference between basic and applied science was widely taken for granted and autonomy was a value in high esteem. Most recent accounts of the history of science policy start abruptly from World War II, emphasize the Cold War context, and neglect the pioneering role of the Soviet Union in forming todays “big science.” This paper claims that a closer look into the intellectual heritage from the early twentieth century will be helpful in navigating present issues of science policy. The “Lysenko affair” was a paradigmatic case in forming Cold War views on science and politics.



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Citations of this work

Science, truth and dictatorship: Wishful thinking or wishful speaking?Stephen John - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 78:64-72.
A Historical Perspective on the Distinction Between Basic and Applied Science.Nils Roll-Hansen - 2017 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 48 (4):535-551.

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Science, truth, and democracy.Philip Kitcher - 2001 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Science, Truth, and Democracy.A. Bird - 2003 - Mind 112 (448):746-749.
The grammar of science.Karl Pearson - 1911 - Mineola, N.Y.: Dover Publications.

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