Series ended Lecture
NSF Distinguished Lecturer

About the series

An NSF Distinguished Lecturer:     

Rogers Hollingsworth

Director, Institute for Biomedical Research, University of Wisconsin

Major Discoveries and the Performance of the American System of Science

Tuesday, April 17 - Noon to 1:30 p.m. - Room 110

Co-sponsored by SBE & OLPA

About the Speaker:  Most of Hollingsworth's scholarship has focused on  institutional change within and across countries. His current research project, funded in part by NSF, aims to explain the variation across countries, over time, and across research organizations in the rate at which major discoveries in bio-medical science occur. Hollingsworth is a faculty member at the University of Wisconsin (Madison) where he has held appointments as Professor in the Departments of Sociology, History, the Industrial Relations Research Institute, Affiliated Faculty Member in the Department of History of Medicine, and Chairperson of the Graduate Program in Comparative History.  He is a Visiting Scholar at the Institute for Non-linear Science at the University of California, San Diego and a Visiting Fellow at the Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla, Cal.

About the Lecture:  Hollingsworth will talk about the organizational and psychological factors influencing creativity in fundamental science.  His lecture will address three themes: (1) how the characteristics of research organizations and their laboratories, and the traits of individual scientists, relate to the making of major scientific discoveries; (2) how sharply decreasing returns to the investments in science and technology relate to the making of major discoveries; and (3) suggestions for improving the conditions for the making of fundamental discoveries in American society.

The data set for this lecture involves many years of research about more than 750 research organizations in Britain, France, Germany, and the United States and about 2100 laboratories. It is based on an analysis of 291 major discoveries; in-depth interviews with approximately 500 scientists, administrators, and officers of major funding agencies on both sides of the Atlantic; and archival research.

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Past events in this series

April 17, 2007, 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.