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Big Science by Wikipedia

Big Science

The Wikipedia entry for Big Science

by Wikipedia


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Big Science is a term used by scientists and historians of science to describe a series of changes in science which occurred in industrial nations during and after World War II.

While World War I was the first war in which science played a major role in warfare and armaments, the increase in government and industrial patronage for science following the second World War was on a scale wholly unprecedented. World War II has often been called "the physicists' war" for the role that those scientists played in the development of new weapons and tools, notably the proximity fuze, radar, and the atomic bomb. The bulk of these last two activities took place in a new form of research facility: the government-sponsored laboratory, employing thousands of technicians and scientists, managed by universities (in this case, the University of California and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology).

In the shadow of the first atomic weapons, the importance of a strong scientific research establishment was apparent to any country wishing to have a role in international politics. After the success of the Manhattan Project -- a scientific and technological endeavor on an unprecedented scale -- international governments became the chief patron of science, and the character of the scientific establishment underwent several key changes. This was especially marked in the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War, but also to a lesser extent in many other countries.


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  • Published: 2005
  • LearnOutLoud.com Product ID: B015779
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