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photo: University Library Leuven, destroyed. University Archive, KU Leuven
During 1914 and 1925, the academies played multiple roles, ranging from the resistance against German occupants to the development of technologies for military and medical use. How did they influence the mobilization for war? In which scientific or technical domains were they particularly active? These and further questions are discussed on an international symposium on 8 and 9 June in Metz (France), held under the auspices of the Académie des sciences.
While the role of sciences during World War I has attracted a great deal of attention in recent years, the subject of academies in that context has been little studied. The joint symposium of the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, the Académie des sciences and the Royal Society takes account on the full range of sciences, medicine and technology, setting the work of the European academies during the World War in a broad context. Special attention is paid to the relations between the diverse military, industrial and political elements that bore on the conduct of war.
The speakers discuss among other topics the rhetoric of the academies, how research was conducted, and the role of scientists during the years of war. Special attention is paid to the history of the academies of France, Belgium, Hungary, Italy and Austria during that period.
The symposium at the Université de Lorraine is the second of three conferences, organised by the three national academies. The first symposium took place in 2014 under the auspices of the Leopoldina in Halle (Saale), the third is planned for 2018.