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ERIC Number: ED241358
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Pages: 10
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Isaiah Bowman and New Deal Science Policy.
Smith, Neil
An account of the career of Isaiah Bowman, a leading figure in American science, is discussed in the context of the historical uses of geography and the contemporary perspective of that discipline. The first of three sections briefly addresses the current crisis in the field of geography: a narrowness of disciplinary perspective. Such a view would have appalled Bowman, who, while a notable geographer, was also a leader in the formulation of national and international science policy, American foreign policy, and postwar reconstruction policy. Section 2 outlines Bowman's view of science. This view encompassed two contradictory perspectives--that of science as an institution independent of the rest of society and that of science as an important tool for solving social problems. Bowman sought to resolve this contradiction through the role he played in the establishment of the Science Advisory Board, discussed in section 3. This board, established in 1933 under Bowman's advice, coordinated all government research, initiated new research, and provided expert advice to government departments. Victim of a 2-year dispute over control between the President and the National Academy, the Advisory Board was dismantled in 1935. However, when the struggle arose again after World War II, Bowman resurfaced in his dual role as social idealist and political pragmatist. (LP)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Historical Materials
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A