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Critiques of Big Science

Martin, Joseph D. (2021) 'Critiques of Big Science.', in Debating the Societal Impact of Big Science in the 21st Century. .


The name “big science,” like “big bang” or “big pharma,” began as a slur. Big science, that is, has been the subject of critique for at least as long as we have had a name for it. This chapter explores that legacy. It demonstrates how big science became pivot point in disagreements over the social and cultural value of scientific inquiry, how those debates exposed disciplinary rivalries and jealousies, and how debates about the merits of big science within the science community translated into the world of policymaking, in particular as big science became megascience toward the end of the twentieth century.

Item Type:Book chapter
Full text:Publisher-imposed embargo
(AM) Accepted Manuscript
File format - PDF
Publisher Web site:
Date accepted:18 August 2021
Date deposited:19 August 2021
Date of first online publication:2021
Date first made open access:No date available

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