Does science need heroes? (Nobel) Prize cultures in the Netherlands
The symposium “Does science need heroes? (Nobel) Prize cultures in the Netherlands, will take place in Leiden on September 29-30, 2023. It is organized by the Rijksmuseum Boerhaave and Nils Hansson of the Heinrich-Heine-University, Düsseldorf.
The history of the Nobel Prize, the most prestigious and visible science award in the world, is since the very beginning in 1901 intertwined with Dutch science history. Counting more than twenty Dutch laureates to date, among others Einthoven, van ’t Hoff and Tinbergen, the Netherlands rank among the top ten nations in the statistics of Nobelists per country.
Having said that, our understanding of how awards have been and are used as a symbol for excellence has remained poor. Using the Netherlands as a case-study, this symposium aims at investigating how scientific prizes in general and the Nobel Prize in particular are enacted in different settings (museums, universities, cities) and for various purposes. Drawing on current discussions about ‘heroes’ in science (vs. teamwork), we wish to explore the meanings and motives of scientific accolades in the Netherlands and beyond.
Deadline call for papers: July 15, 2022.
All information is on the Museum Boerhaave website.