Place and Practice: Doing Science in and on the Ocean 1800-2012

Network Node: 
Sat., Jun. 14, 2014, 9:00am - Tue., Jun. 17, 2014, 5:00pm

Place and Practice: Doing Science in and on the Ocean 1800-2012
University of King’s College, 6350 Coburg Rd., Halifax, NS
June 14-17, 2014

Public Events
Information for speakers:
  Pre-circulated papers [password protected]
Travel and Accommodation Information
  Travel Claims Form for speakers
Sponsors and Partners

See latest program here.

Public Events

Oceanographers have traditionally defined themselves by the act of going to sea and working there. The intense human experience of the ocean environment, mediated through technology, has unified what is a many-sided field of study, difficult to describe in conventional disciplinary terms. In the 21st century, however, the shape of narratives about scientific disciplines has been transformed, making the interdisciplinarity of oceanography seem more typical of the development of modern sciences. At the same time, new technologies and data networks now increasingly make it desirable to send instruments to sea, not oceanographers. Finally, oceanography is conceptually and politically a global project. The models, theories and practices of oceanography pass beyond the boundaries of regions, basins, states. Yet these take shape within particular conceptions of place, interests and sovereignty, not least because the ocean sciences are involved with the practical and epistemological control of the earth’s resources, and so are intimately connected with the realities of both nation states and globalized economies.

The overarching goals of the workshop are several:

  • To promote and invigorate the history of oceanography;
  • To build international connections within a new generation of scholars;
  • To build relationships between emerging and established scholars in the history of oceanography;
  • To highlight methodologies of material culture analysis and incorporate them into mainstream historical work; and to encourage communication among historians, ocean scientists and museum professionals to cultivate public engagement with scholarly work in the history of oceanography.


Sponsors and Partners:
Thank you to our sponsors and partners for their generous contributions:

SSHRC Connections Grant
University of King's College
York University
Watson International Science History Publications Ltd.
Nova Scotian Institute of Science
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
International Commission for the History of Oceanography
Dalhousie University Department of Oceanography
Canada Science and Technology Museum
American Institute of Physics

University of Conneticut Maritime Studies
Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Other: Coming soon.


Melanie Frappier, King's
Gordon McOuat, King's
Katharine Anderson, York
Helen Rozwadowski, University of Connecticut

With assistance from:
Izzy Morin, Dalhousie University SRES MA student

and volunteer assistants:

Emily Tector, Situating Science Project Coordinator
Michael Murphy, Local Coordinator
Randall Brooks, University of King's College
Gerry Lunn, Curator of Interpretation, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic
Carolyn Gillis, University of King's College Co-op Bookstore