The Solvay Councils and the Nobel Institution

  • Elisabeth Crawford
Part of the Science Networks · Historical Studies book series (SNHS, volume 22)


The Solvay Councils and the Nobel Institution are generally cited as prime examples of the internationalism which dominated science at the turn of the century. The international movement which developed from 1880 onwards was based on the idea of scientific universalism, which aimed to judge all scientific facts against objective standards, irrespective of the nationality, race or religion of the scientists themselves. It was also based on the conviction that all human progress — be it material, intellectual or moral — was achieved by means of science. Such were the convictions held by the founders of the two institutions I shall be discussing in this article.


Nobel Prize Modern Physic International Movement 1880 Onward Royal Swedish Academy 
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  1. 1.
    E. CRAWFORD, The Beginnings of the Nobel Institution: The Science Prizes, 1901–1915, Cambridge University Press and Les Editions de la Maison des Sciences de l’Homme, Cambridge and Paris, 1984.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    D. BARKAN, Walther Nernst and the Transition to Modern Physical Chemistry, PhD dissertation, Harvard University, 1990; E. CRAWFORD, Arrhenius: from Ionic Theory to the Greenhouse Effect, Science History Publications, Canton, 1996.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    E. CRAWFORD, op.cit, pp. 232–237; D. BARKAN, Simply a Matter of Chemistry? The Nobel Prize for 1920, Perspectives on Science 2 (1994), pp. 357–395.Google Scholar

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© Springer Basel AG 1999

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  • Elisabeth Crawford

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