Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 9, No. 8 July, 3, 1946


The war has had a profound influence on the social and political outlook of scientists. Where before the "ivory tower" attitude was prevalent, the problems arising from the Atomic Bomb and the widespread application of science to warfare have shaken the majority into a critical revaluation of the relations of science and society. How can scientists ensure that they shall be best fitted and organised for the pursuit of knowledge, and that the results of their investigations shall be applied to the benefit of mankind?

Modern science arose at about the same time as that tremendous advance in the technical equipment of society which is generally known us the Industrial Revolution, and in its development has kept step with the great changes in our civilization which have resulted.

That is not to say that it has been the architect of the revolution, consciously guiding it but rather that the new techniques made possible by increasing scientific knowledge have been borrowed somewhat haphazardly, and applied in an unco-ordinated fashion to the job in hand. Granted that new practices have stimulated fresh fields of research, as for example the science of thermodynamics arising from the practical problem of the steam-engine, it is generally true to say that those who made the fundamental discoveries had little hand in their application, nor little appreciation of the technical and sociological problems Involved.