Category: History & Philosophy of Science

  1. HPS Podcast: Samara Greenwood on Social Change and Science

    Samara Greenwood is currently undertaking a PhD in the History and Philosophy of Science (HPS), in which she investigates the various ways in which changes in society can impact science. In this episode of The HPS Podcast, Samara discusses some of the controversies of drawing connections between social and political contexts and scientific change, including links between second wave feminism and […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2024/06/21/hps-podcast-samara-greenwood-on-social-change-and-science

  2. Introducing Dr Kate Lynch, Lecturer in Philosophy of Science

    We are excited to announce the appointment of Dr Kate E Lynch as Lecturer in the History and Philosophy of Science (HPS). Dr Lynch is a philosopher of science and a biologist, whose work brings together philosophical analysis and empirical investigation. She is also a talented science communicator with a keen interest in engaging the […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2024/03/25/introducing-dr-kate-lynch-lecturer-in-philosophy-of-science

  3. Professor Mike Arnold: A Vote of Thanks

    Professor Michael (Mike) Arnold recently retired as head of SHAPS’s History & Philosophy of Science Program. His longtime colleague, Emeritus Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor, Janet McCalman, AC, reflects here on Mike’s career and legacy. Mike Arnold has retired from History & Philosophy of Science, leaving it, the social sciences, the university and, indeed, the world, […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2024/02/26/professor-mike-arnold-a-vote-of-thanks

  4. Feminist Critiques of Sex Difference Research

    Feminist critics of sex difference research are often accused of claiming there are no sex differences, or that sex hormones have no influence on human behaviour. In this episode of the HPS Podcast, Professor Cordelia Fine joins Samara Greenwood to talk us through why this is a false characterisation. Instead, feminist researchers are digging into […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2024/01/16/feminist-critiques-of-sex-difference-research

  5. Our Mental Health Has Gone Digital

    Apps, wearables and ingestibles that support digital mental health have lowered barriers to access but have profound social, ethical, and legal implications. In this extract from her new book, The Artefacts of Digital Mental Health, and republished here from Pursuit, Dr Jacinthe Flore (HPS) new digital mental health technologies and their impact.  In April 2022, The […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/12/20/our-mental-health-has-gone-digital

  6. Remembering and Forgetting the Dead

    Ancient Celtic Halloween ­­– or All Hallow’s Eve ­– was a day to acknowledge the dead. Modern rituals of marking death continue this tradition, both remembering and letting go. In this article, republished from Pursuit, two of the DeathTech Research team –SHAPS’s Mike Arnold, together with Tamara Kohn (School of Social and Political Sciences) – discuss […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/10/30/remembering-and-forgetting-the-dead

  7. Welcome Dr Jacinthe Flore, Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Science

    We are excited to welcome Dr Jacinthe Flore as SHAPS’s new Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Science. Dr Flore is a Science and Technology Studies (STS) Scholar and a Historian of Medicine, who combines the Medical Humanities, STS and critical theory in her research. She has published widely on the history and application of […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/10/09/welcome-dr-jacinthe-flore-lecturer-in-history-and-philosophy-of-science

  8. On Biography and the History of Medicine

    Dr Fallon Mody in conversation with PhD candidate Samara Greenwood, for the HPS Podcast.

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/08/17/on-biography-and-the-history-of-medicine

  9. Reflecting on the Nature of Science

    Dr Kristian Camilleri (HPS) in conversation with PhD candidate Samara Greenwood, for the HPS Podcast.

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/24/reflecting-on-the-nature-of-science

  10. Working Fathers Introduction

    Welcome to Working Fathers, a podcast about dads, families and work. We look at the many different roles fathers play in contemporary Australian families and society and how policy can better recognise, value and support. Listen to the podcast via the links to each episode found below, or on your preferred podcast provider. The creators […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/17/working-fathers-introduction

  11. Working Fathers: Episode 1

    Our starting point is the large gender gap in time spent directly caring for children in economically developed and relatively gender egalitarian societies like Australia. Things aren’t what they were 50 years ago. Mothers, particularly of younger children, are more likely to do paid work than they were in the past. But it’s still quite […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/17/working-fathers-episode-1

  12. Working Fathers: Episode 2

    The family as an institution has changed significantly across time and place. How people divide labour within and beyond the family unit has been in flux throughout human history. The current model of fatherhood in many Western nations, including Australia, is a modified version of what we usually call the breadwinner model, where one parent […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/17/working-fathers-episode-2

  13. Working Fathers: Episode 3

    How much freedom do fathers have? Do fathers have real choices when it comes to decisions about how to divide their time between paid work and caring for the kids at home? And where do government and organisational policies fit in? One of the major societal changes of the past century has been the rise […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/17/working-fathers-episode-3

  14. Working Fathers: Episode 4

    In this episode, we look at more of the pressures that prevent fathers from being active and equal caregivers in their children’s lives. In particular, we look at the gender norms that dictate what it means to be a good man, and the social norms that dictate what it means to be a good worker […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/17/working-fathers-episode-4

  15. Working Fathers: Episode 5

    What’s next for Australian fathers? In this episode, we look at the future of fatherhood. So far, one thing all of our guests seem to agree on is that, for many families, current arrangements aren’t working as well as they could. Expectations on men as fathers are expanding, but without much of a lessening of […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/07/17/working-fathers-episode-5

  16. The HPS Podcast is Here!

    On May 31, a new SHAPS contribution to public outreach and engagement was released. The HPS Podcast shares fascinating contemporary research in History and Philosophy of Science with those outside the discipline. Each episode is designed to be short, engaging and entertaining. Covering a wide range of topics, this is a podcast for anyone with […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/06/02/the-hps-podcast-is-here

  17. Gordon Dadswell

    Gordon Dadswell (PhD in History & Philosophy of Science, 2023), ‘Working Wood: The State, Wood Science and Industry, Australia, 1918–1949′ This study identified the role of three national forest products laboratories and their relationship with other government agencies and specifically, to the Australian timber industry. The laboratories were established with several objectives, including to reduce […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/05/19/gordon-dadswell

  18. Morgan Weaving

    Morgan Weaving (PhD in History & Philosophy of Science, 2023) ‘Misogyny as Hierarchy Maintenance’ There is growing interest in ‘misogyny’ within psychology, yet the concept lacks a clear definition and theoretical grounding. This thesis explores misogyny as a form of gender hierarchy maintenance. Specifically, the thesis seeks to i) provide a definition and conceptual model […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2023/01/29/morgan-weaving

  19. Imagining a Different Internet

    Last week, the US government released six principles for reforming Big Tech. It’s the latest example of growing efforts to regulate the handful of companies with enormous influence over the internet. But while there’s a growing appetite for a new, better kind of internet, it’s hard to imagine what that might look like. In this […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2022/09/29/imagining-different-internet

  20. Understanding the Experiences of Early Career Researchers

    In May 2022, the History & Philosophy of Science (HPS) program hosted Nicole Nelson, Associate Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who uses ethnographic and historical methods to study methods development and uncertainty in the biomedical sciences. During her visit, she delivered a public lecture, ‘Controlling the Interpretation of Replication Experiments’. In the lecture, Nicole […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2022/09/12/understanding-the-experiences-of-early-career-researchers

  21. Working for Cultural Change in the Defence and Security Sector

    Dr Samantha Crompvoets is best known as the government consultant who first reported on war crimes allegedly perpetrated by members of the Australian Special Forces in Afghanistan. While today Samantha runs a consulting company specialising in applied social science research, she began her academic career as an Honours student in the History & Philosophy of […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2022/07/25/cultural-change-in-defence

  22. An Interview with Dr Darrin Durant

    Dr Darrin Durant is Senior Lecturer in Science and Technology Studies (STS) in the History & Philosophy of Science program. Darrin has published widely on the relation between experts and citizens in democratic decision-making, disinformation and democracy, climate and energy politics, as well as nuclear waste disposal. In this interview, Darrin kindly sat down with […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2022/04/18/an-interview-with-dr-darrin-durant

  23. Dang Nguyen (Nguyễn Hồng Hải Đăng)

    Dang Nguyen (Nguyễn Hồng Hải Đăng in her native Vietnamese) (PhD, History & Philosophy of Science), ‘Tracing Non-Biomedical Therapeutic Knowledge: Social-Network Lives in Action’ This thesis investigates the performance of non-biomedical therapeutic knowledge as situated knowledge on the internet. Non-biomedical therapeutic knowledge is defined as medical knowledge that exists in separation, but not isolation from, […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2022/03/14/dang-nguyen-2

  24. We Need to Rethink How We Manage Deathcare

    Australia’s deathcare system is already showing cracks, but the pressures will only worsen, especially as the baby boomer generation takes us into ‘peak death’. A team of scholars from the University’s DeathTech research team, including SHAPS’s Mike Arnold, explore the topic in this article recently published on Pursuit Death is a phenomenon like no other. […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2022/01/15/we-need-to-rethink-how-we-manage-deathcare

  25. Celebrating Our Students’ Achievements

    Looking back on last year’s note of congratulations to our student award recipients, I noted then the extraordinary (pandemic-driven) conditions during which the students were working. This year the point is doubly true and needs to be acknowledged explicitly. Most of the work that is being awarded by these prizes was done remotely, often independently, […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/11/15/shaps-student-prizes-scholarships-2020

  26. Paul Siemers

    Paul Siemers, ‘What is the Internet of Things? An Ontological Investigation’ (PhD in the History & Philosophy of Science, 2021) The Internet of Things is widely considered to be of major – and increasing – significance as a global socio-technical phenomenon. However, answering the question of what the Internet of Things is turns out to […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/10/21/paul-siemers

  27. Unpacking the History of Quantum Mechanics

    Senior Lecturer in History & Philosophy of Science Dr Kristian Camilleri is currently completing work on a book which challenges the standard understanding of the history of quantum mechanics. The book manuscript is provisionally titled Quantum Mechanics and Its Discontents: The Making of An Orthodoxy. In this interview, Kristian sat down with current HPS PhD […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/09/27/quantum-mechanics

  28. Confronting Racism in the Sciences: A Resource Set for Scholars

    Dr Eden Smith is a Research Fellow in the History and Philosophy of Science (HPS). Alongside their focused research, Eden has been collating resources on key topics in HPS to help facilitate conversations between those who analyse science, such as historians, philosophers, and sociologists of science, and those who practice science. As part of this initiative, […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/08/16/confronting-racism-in-the-sciences-a-resource-set-for-scholars

  29. A Historical View on Physiotherapy at the University of Melbourne

    Since retiring from a distinguished career in physiotherapy, Professor Joan McMeeken AM has devoted much time to researching the history of physiotherapy at the University of Melbourne – the first university to teach it in Australia. While formal studies began in 1906, the university only formed a dedicated School of Physiotherapy in 1991 after energetic […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/07/19/historical-view-on-physiotherapy

  30. Astronomy in World History

    One of the most popular subjects in the History and Philosophy of Science program is the second-year summer intensive, Astronomy in World History (HPSC20015). Conducted over ten days, this subject explores the history of astronomy across a variety of cultures including the Babylonian, Ancient Greek, Chinese, Indian and Arabic civilisations. As well as learning through […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/05/03/astronomy-in-world-history

  31. Episode 6 in the SHAPS Podcast Series: Professor Mike Arnold

    Professor Mike Arnold discusses his research on the intersections between death, technology and society, in this final episode of the SHAPS 2020 'Disaster and Change' podcast series, hosted by Dr Henry Reese.

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2021/02/27/episode-6-in-the-shaps-podcast-series-professor-mike-arnold

  32. Exploring the History of Antimatter

    Kevin Orrman-Rossiter is an unusual PhD candidate. Having completed a PhD in Physics early in his career, he is now immersed in a second PhD in History and Philosophy of Science (HPS) looking at the history of antimatter focusing on the positron, the antiparticle of the electron. In conversation with Samara Greenwood, Kevin describes what […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/12/18/exploring-the-history-of-antimatter

  33. On God and Science

    For 20 years, Reverend Dr Stephen Ames has co-taught one of the most popular courses in the History and Philosophy Science program, God and the Natural Sciences (HPSC2002). In this subject, Stephen, who is both an Anglican Priest and HPS scholar, worked alongside atheist colleagues to show how religious and non-religious points of view can […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/10/19/on-god-and-science

  34. Federation Stars: The Meanings of Popular Astronomy in Australia at the Turn of the Twentieth Century

    In 1901 a new flag was chosen to represent a new nation, and the central emblem was a constellation of the southern sky. By this time, the symbolism of the Southern Cross had been entrenched; almost all previous Australian flag designs had included this device. The meanings of the Cross and the southern stars were, […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/10/12/federation-stars-the-meanings-of-popular-astronomy-in-australia-at-the-turn-of-the-twentieth-century

  35. Reimagining Trust in Science

    During National Science Week 2020 the History and Philosophy of Science program (HPS) hosted two events as part of the University of Melbourne’s Science Festival. The first event was a panel discussion on ‘Reimagining Trust in Science’, the second an interactive workshop showing how the repliCATS platform is being used to assess the reliability of […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/09/22/reimagining-trust-in-science

  36. From HPS to Saving Planet A

    Recently, HPS Alumna Dr Zoë Loh featured on the ABC documentary Fight for Planet A in relation to her role as a senior research scientist at CSIRO. In this interview, Zoë spoke with Samara Greenwood about her love for History and Philosophy of Science and how it has contributed not only to her career, but […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/09/01/from-hps-to-saving-planet-a

  37. Are There ‘Male’ and ‘Female’ Brains?

    How useful are the well-known and hotly contested categories of ‘male brain’ and ‘female brain’? Among experts, nobody really questions that anatomical sex differences in the brain exist. But since the advent of brain science, the scientific community has been divided over how many differences there are, which ones have been definitively proven, how large […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/08/10/are-there-male-and-female-brains

  38. Remembering Ding Dyason: Bringing Humanities and Science Together

    Last year marked one hundred years since the birth of Diana ‘Ding’ Dyason (1919–1989), historian of medicine and former head of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS). As one of HPS’s most inspiring and effective leaders, Ding Dyason was honoured with a series of events including the Ding Dyason Centenary HPS Seminar at the University […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/07/13/remembering-ding-dyason-bringing-humanities-and-science-together

  39. Science Needs to Look Inward to Move Forward

    Robust science depends on encouraging and incentivising more open and transparent practices in research – now, metascientists are looking at what works and what doesn’t.In a piece originally published in Pursuit, Andrew Trounson reports on this new discipline, including the contributions of Professor Fiona Fidler and Professor Simine Vazire from University of Melbourne. About a year […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/06/30/science-needs-to-look-inward-to-move-forward

  40. Katherine Mannell

    Katherine Mannell, ‘Young Adults, Mobile Messaging, and the Negotiation of (Un)Availability’ (PhD, History & Philosophy of Science, 2020) With a mobile phone, a person can reach and be reached anytime, anywhere. As many scholars have noted, this creates mutual expectations of availability, particularly among young adults whose friendships typically involve high rates of mobile messaging. […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/06/03/katherine-mannell

  41. Mary Proctor: A Forgotten Populariser of Astronomy

    In a recent History & Philosophy of Science seminar, SHAPS Research Fellow Dr Martin Bush presented his work on British-American populariser of astronomy, Mary Proctor, and her intriguing relationship to Australian history. From 1912–1914, Mary conducted a high-profile public lecture tour of Australia and New Zealand at the invitation of astronomer Walter Duffield. The purpose […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/06/03/mary-proctor-a-forgotten-populariser-of-astronomy

  42. Christopher Orrell

    Christopher Orrell, ‘Communicable Knowledge: Medical Communication, Professionalisation, and Medical Reform in Colonial Victoria, 1855–66′ (MA in History & Philosophy of Science, 2020) This thesis examines the process of medical professionalisation in colonial Victoria from 1855 to 1866. During this eleven-year period the medical profession of colonial Victoria were able to create Australia’s first long lasting […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/06/03/christopher-orrell

  43. Death in a Time of Corona

    The COVID-19 pandemic is dramatically changing how family and friends around the world can mourn and memorialise loved ones who pass away – from funerals limited to small numbers, to morgues, crematoria and cemeteries having to suspend routine processes in the face of unprecedented demand. The DeathTechNetwork – an interdisciplinary research group studying death technologies […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/04/16/death-in-a-time-of-corona

  44. Gender Equity in the Workplace: An Interview with Professor Cordelia Fine

    Professor of History and Philosophy of Science, Cordelia Fine, is well-known for her research into science, sex and gender. While her earlier research involved critiquing the science of sex differences, lately she has turned to issues of gender equality in the workplace. This research led to her recent invitation to join former Prime Minister Julia […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/04/16/gender-equity-in-the-workplace-an-interview-with-professor-cordelia-fine

  45. Why I Study History and Philosophy of Science: A Student Reflection

    Samara Greenwood is a graduate student in her third year of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS). What began as a side interest quickly developed into a passion. In this personal piece, Samara reflects on what attracted her to HPS, what keeps her interested and her plans for the future. Where I started I began […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/04/13/why-i-study-history-and-philosophy-of-science

  46. Alternative Social Media Platforms: An Ethnographic Study of the Scuttlebutt Community

    Can Open-Source Software (OSS) platforms offer ethical alternatives to Facebook and Twitter? How do technologies and social values interact with one another? And what might we learn from a close-up look at how OSS communities operate? A new research project in the History and Philosophy of Science explores these questions.   Having found an intersection […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2020/02/10/alternative-social-media-platforms-an-ethnographic-study-of-the-scuttlebutt-community

  47. Philosophy at the Large Hadron Collider: An Interview with Sophie Ritson

    Sophie Ritson completed her honours degree at the University of Melbourne in 2011, majoring in the History and Philosophy of Science. After finishing her PhD at the University of Sydney, Sophie’s academic work took her to Austria. She is now part of a large interdisciplinary team exploring how scientific knowledge is produced at the Large […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2019/11/29/philosophy-at-the-large-hadron-collider-an-interview-with-sophie-ritson

  48. Tracing the Evolution of Cancer Cytogenetics: An Interview with PhD candidate Lynda Campbell

    After retiring from a distinguished scientific career, Lynda Campbell developed an interest in the history of her field.

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2019/10/29/tracing-the-evolution-of-cancer-cytogenetics-an-interview-with-phd-candidate-lynda-campbell

  49. Researching History on the High Seas

    Last year, History of Science lecturer Dr Gerhard Wiesenfeldt sailed across the South Atlantic on a tall ship. During the six-week voyage, he explored the use of early navigational instruments including the cross-staff and astrolabe. In the following interview, Gerhard describes this unique experience to Samara Greenwood. Could you give us a brief overview of […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2019/10/18/researching-history-on-the-high-seas

  50. Real Problem, Wrong Solution: Why The Nationals Shouldn’t Politicise the Science Replication Crisis

    Last week, politicians and farming lobbyists weighed in on the replication crisis in science and a number of academics, including several from SHAPS, responded in the following article republished from The Conversation. The National Party, Queensland farming lobby group AgForce, and MP Bob Katter have banded together to propose an ‘independent science quality assurance agency’. […]

    blogs.unimelb.edu.au/shaps-research/2019/10/03/real-problem-wrong-solution-why-the-nationals-shouldnt-politicise-the-science-replication-crisis

Number of posts found: 61