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ISA Medal 2007 to Bruno Latour

The Institute of Advanced Studies assigned the ISA Medal for Science 2007 to Prof. Bruno Latour

Jun 06, 2008 from 05:00 PM to 06:00 PM

Where Department Ciamician, via Selmi 2, Bologna 

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On the proposal of the Department of Communication and of several other professors of the University of Bologna, the Council of the Institute of Advanced Studies has fully endorsed the nomination of Prof. Bruno Latour, world famous philosopher and anthropologist and Research Dean of the Institut d'Etudes Politiques of Paris, for the second ISA Medal for Science 2007.
The ISA Medal for Science is the highest honour awarded by the Institute "in recognition of research contributions characterized by both excellence and influence".

In his lecture entitled "Can Modernity be Modernized?", Bruno Latour will treat the theme of the world ecological crisis and of the challenge it imposes on modern sciences and politics. After having discussed such theme in his books We have Never been Modern and Politics of Nature, Latour will elaborate in Bologna the actuality of this subject.

The impetuous technological progress triggered by the scientific and industrial revolutions reveals today all its limits. The climate change, the shrink of biodiversity, the unbalances of the industrial development have recently come to question the systems of western societies, requiring a new alliance between man and nature. Faced with the crisis of modernity, science and politics cannot just take refuge in a plead for reverse, relying on localism and traditionalism. On the contrary, they should start a deep movement of renovation to guarantee the maximum participation of all the actors of collective life: not only human being, but also animals, natural elements, technical artefacts. The distinction between science and politics should be overcome to build a ‘parlement des choses’, an set of hybrid forums where our common future could be negotiated.

The conference will be preceded by handover of the degrees of Collegio Superiore of the Università di Bologna, at 4pm.

The Ceremony is open to the public.


Bruno Latour

born in 1947 in Beaune, Burgundy, from a wine grower family, was trained first as a philosopher and then an anthropologist. From 1982 to 2006, he has been professor at the Centre de sociologie de l'Innovation at the Ecole nationale supérieure des mines in Paris and, for various periods, visiting professor at UCSD, at the London School of Economics and in the history of science department of Harvard University.
He is now professor at Sciences Po Paris associated with the Centre de sociologie des organisations (CSO) and is also the vice-president for research of that school.
After field studies in Africa and California he specialized in the analysis of scientists and engineers at work. In addition to work in philosophy, history, sociology and anthropology of science, he has collaborated into many studies in science policy and research management.


ISA Medal for Sciences
For research activities characterized by excellence and scientific value.