Article ID: CBB493149696

Emergence of a techno-legal specialty: Animal tests to assess chemical safety in the UK, 1945–1960 (2021)


It has been suggested that knowledge domains which emerge within regulatory science represent a compromise between technical knowledge and policy priorities. This article investigates the claim through consideration of the emergence of animal tests to evaluate chemical safety in the UK between 1945 and 1960. During this period there was a proliferation of new chemical-based innovations in consumer products. The situation gave rise to concerns about the potential impact on public health. Solutions required development of a knowledge domain that would fulfil policy requirements, outside the remit of academic science. Lack of consensus in the scientific field gave rise to debate over the best means to collect accurate data. This resulted in emergence of the new specialty of safety testing, in response to political and industrial needs. The socio-political context of this case illustrates the impact that organisational setting can have on shaping knowledge claims.

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Authors & Contributors
Banken, Ralf
Fauri, Francesca
Fridlund, Mats
Guagnini, Anna
Knowles, Scott Gabriel
Oreskes, Naomi
Technology and Culture
Historia Scientiarum: International Journal of the History of Science Society of Japan
Notes and Records: The Royal Society Journal of the History of Science
Science as Culture
Studies in History and Philosophy of Science
Journal for the History of Knowledge
Harvard University
University of Pennsylvania
Columbia University
Cambridge University Press
Aksant Academic Publishers
Brutus Östlings Bokförlag Symposion
Technology and industry
Technology and politics
Chemical industry
Technology and law
Technology and economics
Marconi, Guglielmo
Moulton, John Fletcher
Time Periods
20th century
21st century
19th century
20th century, early
United States
Great Britain
United Kingdom
International Business Machines Corporation
Royal Society of London
RAND Corporation
ENI (Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi)

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