24th International Congress of History of Science, Technology and Medicine

Reports from the Congress

The 2013 Congress has been widely recognised as a landmark in its field, and has attracted a wide variety of coverage. On this page, we've listed all the reports that have come to our attention.

Detailed reports, overviews and reflections

The Congress organisers’ own report on the Congress, illustrated with some of the best photographs, appears as a special 8-page supplement to the October 2013 issue of Viewpoint, the magazine of the British Society for the History of Science. You can also view the report here (pdf): many thanks to Melanie Keene, editor of Viewpoint, for allowing us to reproduce it on the Congress website.

Professor Boleslav Lichterman produced a detailed report in Russian for Meditsynskaya Gazeta, concentrating mainly on the history of medicine.

The Society for the Social History of Medicine Gazette for November 2013 contains not one but two reports, both extending to cover non-medical content, from Lisa Haushofer and Sarah Jane Bodell.

A report concentrating on ICOHTEC's contribution to the Congress appears in the January 2014 issue of the journal Technology and Culture, contributed by Layne Karafantis, John Laprise and Slawomir Lotysz. (Subscription required)

Jussi-Pekka Hakkarainen of the National Library of Finland provided a wonderful daily diary of his experiences throughout the Congress (click ‘Next’ to see four more entries).

In The Giants’ Shoulders #62, Dominic Berry accomplished the unenviable task of summarising developments throughout the history-of-science blog world across late July and early August 2013, including a wide range of Congress contributions among all manner of other activities.

Laura Mitchell produced a nice survey of her experiences for the Recipes Project blog, including photographs.

The Congress blog is no longer being updated, but will continue as an archive of all the paper previews and pdf copies of the daily newsletter, Congress Transmission. The blog also provides links to the videos, including Hasok Chang’s plenary, the Bright Club comedy sets, and the social media session; and to audio recordings of several papers.

Rebekah Higgitt’s H-word post on nineteenth-century British Association for the Advancement of Science meetings in Manchester is worth reading to put the Congress in historical context; as, in a slightly different sense, are her two Congress previews from November 2012 and May 2013.

Reflecting recent changes in conference culture, a significant record of the Manchester Congress lies in its Twitter stream. Tweets carrying the #ichstm hashtag are still available (scroll down to July), and give a good sense of the frenetic and multifarious discussion.

Photos from various sources have been collected at the iCHSTM Flickr account (thanks to all contributors!) The illustrious Melanie Keene also has a large collection of Congress photos.

iCHSTM reflections: highlights of your Congress is a short video made by iCHSTM volunteers during the Congress, featuring interviews with participants.

Finally, for the definitive account, please turn to The Congress Commemorated

Shorter and specialist reports

Hasok Chang’s keynote address generated an interesting set of critical thoughts from Michael Bycroft, leading to a summary by Seb Falk under the majestic title Hasok Chang and the disgruntled internalists.

Jonathan Aylen, of the Manchester Institute of Innovation Research, refers to the Congress prominently in a short paper for Research Fortnight on citizen history and the role of the expert amateur.

Colleagues at Belgium’s Expertisecentrum voor Technisch, Wetenschappelijk en Industrieel Erfgoed provided a short summary in Dutch.

The Vetenskapshistoria blog provided a short summary of the Congress in Swedish.

Priya Joshi reported on history of medicine at the Congress for the Wellcome Trust Blog.

PF Anderson, of the Emerging Technologies Librarian blog, spotted some interesting Twitter collisions between the Congress and other forums for discussing science communication, policy and publication.

Allan Olley has been particularly diligent in summarising the computing and IT-related presentations for the IT History Society blog.

Newcomen, a learned society dealing with the history of engineering and technology, reported on its sponsored symposium.

The Board of Longitude Project provided a nicely detailed survey of its symposium, including some audience comments and questions, on its own blog.

Kathleen McIlvenna discusses her contribution to the session on museum-university collaborations in a blog post.

The work of printing describes a fascinating event discovered by Anita Guerrini during time off from the Congress: a demonstration of a nineteenth-century manual printing press at the John Rylands Library.

The Barometer Podcast on atmospheric and climate science devoted an entire edition to interviews with Congress participants working on the history of climate.

The Congress was also featured prominently on the University of Manchester’s Faculty of Life Sciences podcast.

The Women in Science Research Network, launched at the Congress, has a page including photos and the text of Professor Ludmilla Jordanova’s launch speech.

Stephen Weldon reported on the Commission on Bibliography and Documentation meeting and symposia for the World History of Science Online blog.

The International Commission on the History of Mathematics produced a detailed summary of its sponsored symposia (pdf).

The Foundation for Science, Technology and Civilisation summarised its contributions across several symposia.

Ele Carpenter reported on the Transnational Nuclear Perspectives symposium.

Victoria Henshaw recorded her role in leading the smellwalking excursion.

The special session on social media and public engagement, held as a digital link-up between iCHSTM and the Science in Public conference at Nottingham, predictably drew considerable discussion on Twitter and in other online venues. Lucy Veale, a Nottingham participant, discusses her contribution at the Snow Scenes blog.

The involvement of a press officer meant that research presented at the Congress also gained an audience in the wider press and broadcast media. A variety of international sources picked up on work such as Ian Burney on the influence of Sherlock Holmes on crime scene investigation; Jordan Bimm on monkeys in space; and Mauricio Sanchez Menchero and Teresa Ordorika on chocolate and hysteria.

If we have missed any significant reports, please contact us with details, and we will add them as time permits.