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Science-Mart: Privatizing American Science Hardcover – 1 Apr 2011

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press (1 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0674046463
  • ISBN-13: 978-0674046467
  • Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 15.2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,123,736 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


An important and intensely provocative book that explores fundamental questions about the political economy of science. Science-Mart challenges us to think more critically, more synthetically and more deeply about the growing commercialization of academic science by exploring the historical and ideological roots of that trend...Mirowski debunks the popular view that there is a linear, lockstep path leading from science and technology to economic growth, a claim that served as the mantra of those urging passage of the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980...Mirowski has shown that a political economist can bring significant new insights to the discussion of academic marketphilia. -- Sheldon Krimsky American Scientist 20110701 Historian and economist Mirowski presents a thoroughly researched and sure-to-be-controversial view of the economic and political influences on science policy in post-WW II America. The author traces the commoditization of science in the US--a shift from the Cold War funding by government and military entities to the present dominance of funding by for-profit corporations--making modern American science just another product in the mammoth economy. -- T. Timmons Choice 20110801

About the Author

Philip Mirowski is Carl Koch Professor of Economics and the History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Notre Dame.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By David Levy on 10 Nov. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
So, a small mystery is solved. Why is Science-Mart relatively readable, when I had to give up the valiant struggle against Mirowski's language in his recent assault on neoliberalism (Never let a serious crisis go to waste)? Simple, and from Prof Mirowski's viewpoint, a rather satisfying vindication of old-fashioned academic principles - it was his editor and referees who managed (temporarily, unfortunately) to keep the lid on his linguistic enthusiasm. (I now recommend he rewrites his book on the 2008 crisis using the same criterion of reading age.) The downside is unfortunately that like neoliberalism, the no doubt mostly inbuilt tendency to writing contorted prose can't be kept under control, even for a short time.

But there's another puzzle: why is that Harvard University (who published Science-Mart and wonderfully hold the copyright to his book, rather than the author - another neoliberal triumph) didn't encourage him to expunge the last section of his book, which is a concise but devastating account of a deeply unsavoury story of `conflict of interest' that resulted in Harvard losing Larry Summers as Harvard president, having to fork out $26m to the USA government in settlement, and keeping the full story under wraps, presumably indefinitely? I can't decide whether this is irony, oversight, or Harvard asserting in the face of quite a lot of evidence the primacy of academic individuality.

It's still a tough read, but much more rewarding for the general reader than Never let a serious crisis go to waste.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
more to come? 6 Nov. 2011
By Stephen Smith - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Definitely worth a read for any practising scientist or anyone interested in public science (academia, etc.). Given the trend in funding and privatization, I wonder whether this will be the first of many books to come on the subject. The book is up to date and the subject is highly relevant. Very readable if not a little colloquial (and opinionated) at times.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Could be more succinct. 7 Aug. 2012
By Stratosphere - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Discusses delicate topics that our scientific community needs to have transparent. Although he tends to rant at times, overall, it's worth the time to read.
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