“Fostering a love of truth”: Ideas of science in UNESCO: a short conceptual history 1945-1965

Research output: Contribution to conference without publisher/journalConference abstract for conferenceResearchpeer-review


“Fostering a love of truth” - Ideas of science in UNESCO: a short conceptual history 1945-1965

Ivan Lind Christensen, Associated professor in modern history, Department of Culture and Global Studies, Aalborg University.

Apart from establishing The Right to Science and the subsequent Recommendations on Science and Scientific Research (1974 and 2017), UNESCO has been a significant agent in international science cooperation since 1945. The ‘S’cience in UNESCO was however a last minute addition. The addition was closely tied up to the beginning of the nuclear age and the creation of the previously unimaginable destructive power of the nuclear bomb. The science department of UNESCO was thus created in a time where science – to the broader public and many politicians – held not only the promise of endless progress in a perfect modernity, but also the threat of world destruction. In the following decades, the onset of The Cold War posed its own challenges to the Mertonian norms of science and to the ideas of international science cooperation in general. In this chapter, we trace the different ideas of science as they were articulated within UNESCO to illustrate what the organization itself understood by the concept of science and its relations to concepts of modernity, progress, and development.
Translated title of the contributionVidenskabsbegrebet i UNESCO 1945-1965
Original languageEnglish
Publication date9 Dec 2018
Number of pages1
Publication statusPublished - 9 Dec 2018
EventThe right to Science - then and now: In honor of the 70th anniversary of the Universal declaration of Human Rights, UDHR. - Jura, Københavns Universitet, København, Denmark
Duration: 10 Dec 201810 Dec 2018


ConferenceThe right to Science - then and now
LocationJura, Københavns Universitet
Internet address

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of '“Fostering a love of truth”: Ideas of science in UNESCO: a short conceptual history 1945-1965'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this