Des savants aux chercheurs : les sciences physiques comme métier (France, 1945-1968)

Abstract : Adopting an approach grounded in the socio-history of sciences perspective, the aim of this thesis is to analyse and explain the transformation that occurred in France after the Second World War : the scientists, regarded in their vast majority as scholars during the 1940’s, undertook what can be described as a major change of profession and craft and became researchers. Starting with the shift in the cultural representations of science caused by Hiroshima, the analysis focuses first on the entrance, or re-entrance, of the scientific question in the political arena, with the growing awareness of a number of actors, notably physicists and chemists, that « the Republic does need scientists ». The second part of the study addresses the universities’ and laboratories’ life : here the decline of the scholar’s model is slower, but more ineluctable, as is shown through the diary of an officer of the Rockefeller Foundation, through the analysis of Academia’s rules and regulations, and through prosopography and socialnetwork analysis. The third part focuses on the local scale and the social technology framing the production of scientists, as it undertook a major recomposition and internationalization, crystallizing the transformation of the profession and craft of the physical scientists. Through the study of the doctoral ecology designed to certify research training, the last part addresses the inscription of this new scientist’s craft in the very norms that structured science – and access to research and university careers.
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Pierre Verschueren. Des savants aux chercheurs : les sciences physiques comme métier (France, 1945-1968). Histoire. Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I, 2017. Français. ⟨NNT : 2017PA01H105⟩. ⟨tel-01769494⟩

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