Science without Boundaries discusses the many issues involved in going beyond disciplinary research practices in science, politics and society, and addresses the complexities of their interface. Governments and politicians are increasingly calling upon the scientific community to deal with global challenges such as climate change, poverty, international governance, peace-making et cetera. These are calls for interdisciplinary research - calls to deal with the interaction of parts in complex systems. The book addresses questions like these: -Does interdisciplinary research fit into the overall disciplinary organization of the sciences? -Does interdisciplinary research meet the high scientific standards of the research community? -How does the science community adopt to changing circumstances? -How responsive is the science community to social and political needs? -To what extent do governments intervene to influence science? -What pattern of interaction exists between politics, society and research? Polar research is used to show how politics may intermingle with science to safeguard national interests in times of dramatic international change.
Willy Ostreng is senior researcher and chairman of the research institute Ocean Futures in Oslo and affiliated faculty at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He was scientific director/professor at the Centre for Advanced Study at the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters from 2003-2009, director of the Fridtjof Nansen Institute Norway from 1978-2003, and adjunct professor of political science at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim from 1994-2004. He has been the visiting senior fellow to the Harvard University and the University of California Berkeley and visiting professor to the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. He was special advisor to the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 1998-99, and is a member of numerous scientific boards, national and international. He is an elected member of the Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and letters, and of the International Academy of Regional Development and Cooperation in Russia. Presently, he is vice-president of the Norwegian Academy of Polar Research. He has published more than 230 scientific works, among them 25 books, on polar affairs and international security, ocean resource management, polar and ocean policy and on the preconditions of interdisciplinary research.