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Society for Social Studies of Science

4S News

Copenhagen - Style, Design and Great Weather


Meeting Summary by Trevor Pinch

October 24, 2012

If you're just  back from Copenhagen like I am - you're probably exhausted. But nice exhausted as when you've been to a great all night party!  We all wondered whether the CBS was big enough and could cope with the unprecedented numbers (over 1600 registered and many more showing up) The answer is yes they could! There was a worrying moment when we all lined up for beer at the first reception - would we ever get served? what if they ran out? what if there was a riot? But we did get served and so the party started - it has started already if you were at the earlier sessions but I was busy at the 4S Council meeting. And I would like to welcome three new people elected to Council - Kelly Moore, Wen Hua Kuo and Vivian Lagesen. I would also like to welcome in our new president elect, Gary Downey. Also I would like to thank everyone who stood and didn't get elected - there is always another time and our rules don't prevent you standing again. We really appreciate you being willing to serve.

As the organization grows we really depend upon our council members. One of the things they do is work on prize committees. We gave out the prizes this year as part of the plenary and nearly everyone I spoke with preferred it that way - so we will do it that way next year in San Diego, and with fewer prizes (we are not meeting with EASST) we will get more time for a substantive plenary. The prize winners this year were: Mullins Prize, Joeri Bruyninckx,  "Sound Sterile: Making Scientific Field Recordings in Ornithology"; Edge Prize A.B. Edmonds "Learning to Love Yourself"; Carson Prize , Stefan Helmreich, Alien Oceans; Fleck Prize, Hugh Raffles, Insectopedia, Bernal prize, Adele Clarke. Congratulations!!!

Thanks in particular to Maya Horst and her team and Alan Irwin of the CBS for making the meeting possible. It set new "design standards" for food, drink and organization. The weather cooperated and as I walked around on Saturday afternoon amongst the groups of people sitting on the grass and benches (or in one case taking a nap) I thought that maybe I had reached STS heaven. Everyone was talking STS it seemed. It was the place to be!