Working Group General History of Science

The Working Group is currently addressing two project bundles:

Science in the Metropolis. Spaces and Constellations of scientific Knowledge in the late Habsburg Empire

In this project bundle the rise of modern research networks in the capital of the monarchy from 1848 to 1914 is considered for the first time in a systematic manner and researched on the basis of concrete examples. Results of this research will be published along with comparative studies oft he sciences in other metropoles in a volume entitled „Science in the Metropolis“ (ed. Mitchell G. Ash) in 2020. Subprojects (selection): „Edition oft he diaries of Franz von Hauer, with commentaries“ (Marianne Klemun/Karl Kadletz); "Ethnology 1873-1933: People and Objects in Motion" (Brooke Penaloza Patzak); "Concepts of space in the geographical disciplines in the late 19th century: Vienna and Berlin" (Petra Svatek); „Knowledge Cultures in/oft he Subterranian. Propagators/translators in the field between science and the public. A Biographical Lexikon“ (Johannes Mattes).

Science in the „Spaces in Between“

Recently, as a result of the “spatial turn” in cultural studies so called „spaces in between“ – „overlappings, intervals and spacings in which elementary processes of knowledge production reside“ (Dotzler/Smidgen 2008) – have been attracting increasing research attention. This concept enables the encounter of different fields of knowledge and also researchers, as well as the bringing together of research practices, instruments and objects (Klemun 2012). Subprojects: „Beringia“ – studies on the ethnology and knowledge history of the area between Asia And North America, in which multiple ethnic groups have settled and via which ancielnt peoples are supposed to have immigrated into North America (Brooke Penaloza Patzak); "Transferprocesses between Science and the Public. (Popular-)Scientific Societies in Nineteenth-century Vienna in the 19th Century" (Johannes Mattes); „Statistics and the constitution of space in the long 19th Jahrhundert (Borbala Zsuzsanna Török). An international workshop in the topic area is planned for 2020.

Head of the Working Group:

Em. o. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Mitchell G. Ash

Other (voluntary) members of the Working Group:

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Marianne Klemun (Institut für Geschichte, Universität Wien)
Dr. Johannes Mattes (ÖAW, AG Geschichte der ÖAW)
Dr. Brooke Penaloza-Patzak (Weltmuseum Wien)
Dr. Petra Svatek (ÖAW, Sammlung Wodan)
Dr. Borbala Zsuzsanna Török (Lisa Meitner Fellow, IföG, Universität Wien)


Kommission für Geschichte und Philosophie der Wissenschaften
Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften
Dr. Ignaz Seipel-Platz 2
1010 Wien
Tel: +43-1-51581-3650


28th October 2019, 18:30

Book Presentation: Johannes Mattes, "Wissenskulturen des Subterranen. Vermittler im Spannungsfeld zwischen Wissenschaft und Öffentlichkeit. Ein biografisches Lexikon"
Wien, Köln, Weimar: Böhlau 2019
Theatersaal of the OeAW