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Dr. Frank Stahnisch presented at recent international "History of Science Society" conference

At the recent international “History of Science Society” conference in Toronto, Ontario (Nov 9-12, 2017), Frank W. Stahnisch presented some early finding from his research with the “History of the Max Planck Society Research Program” in Berlin, Germany, this summer.   As part of a specialized panel, entitled “Creating and Changing Scientific Institutions,” he analyzed several legacies of the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Society after 1948.  The panel was chaired by Samantha Muka (Stevens Institute of Technology, New Jersey, USA) and comprised further presenters from the Dublin Institute of Technology (Ireland), the University of Leyden (The Netherlands), and the University of Pennsylvania (United States).  Stahnisch’s paper primarily examined the immediate postwar period since the creation of the Max Planck Society in 1948.  Despite its strong history prior to WWWII, neuroscience as a new interdisciplinary enterprise remained scarcely represented in West-Germany for almost twenty years.  Based on research in the archives of the Max Planck Society, three major reasons were presented for this historical development: first, the forced emigration of Jewish neuroscientists after 1933. Second, German university structures, which countered interdisciplinary research based on an over-focus on medical research disciplines.  And third, the international isolation of German scientists became a major obstacle to the implementation of new research fields.

November 2017