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  • The Singapore Meeting, 22–26 June 2016

The fifty-ninth annual meeting of the Society for the History of Technology was held at Tembusu College of the National University of Singapore from 22 to 26 June 2016. Members of the program committee were Itty Abraham, Kevin Borg, William Storey, and Karin Zachmann. The local arrangements committee included Gregory Clancey, Margaret Tan, Itty Abraham, Catelijne Coopmans, Lisa Onaga, Sulfikar Amir, Hallam Stevens, Eric Kerr, John DiMoia, Jessica Ratcliff, Jerome Whitington, Sorelle Henricus, Shekhar Krishnan, Ellan Spero, and Tyson Vaughan. Special thanks go to Greg Clancey, Marge Tan, Jocelyn Chan, and Foo Junhong of Tembusu College; Bill Storey and the rest of the 2016 Program Committee; Matt Henderson; David Burke; and the many student volunteers from Tembusu College.

Annual Meeting Sessions

Opening Plenary and Reception


Bruno Latour, Sciences Po, Paris, France


By the Audience

Infrastructures of Risk and Disaster (Part I)


Yeonsil Kang, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, South Korea, and Scott Gabriel Knowles, Drexel University, United States


Kim Fortun, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, United States, Scott Gabriel Knowles, Drexel University, United States, and Lee Vinsel, Stevens Institute of Technology, United States Papers: “Manufactured Landscape: Law and Hydraulics in the Ganga-Brahmaputra Delta,” Debjani Bhattacharyya, Drexel University, United States; “Drought in the Rainforest: Ships, Cities, and the Slow Disaster of Water Scarcity in Panama,” Ashley Carse, Vanderbilt University, United States; “Making Fire-Resistant Infrastructure in Prewar and Postwar Japanese Cities,” Takehiko Hashimoto, University of Tokyo, Japan; “Invisible [End Page 218] Infrastructures: The Weather Warning Process in the United States,” Jennifer Henderson, Virginia Tech, United States

Understanding Innovation across Cultures and Technologies I: Narratives of Innovation in Eastern Europe, Japan, and the United States


Wiebe Bijker, Maastricht University, Netherlands, Lars Heide, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark, and Annapurna Mamidipudi, Maastricht University, Netherlands


Wiebe Bijker, Maastricht University, Netherlands


Annapurna Mamidipudi, Maastricht University, Netherlands


“History Matters: Tradition and Innovation in the Modernization of the Soviet and Czechoslovak Automobile Industry,” Valentina Fava, Technische Universität Berlin, Germany; “History of Japanese Petrochemistry Technology Development: From the Systematization of Technologies of NMNS,” Osamu Kamei, National Museum of Nature and Science, Japan; “Dynamics of Innovation in Success and Limits to IBM Mainframe Computers,” Lars Heide, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark

Practitioner’s Roundtable: Challenges and Opportunities for Working at the Intersections of Technology, Gender Equality, and Youth Empowerment in the 21st Century (sponsored by Tembusu College)

Organizers and Chairs:

Lisa Onaga, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and Sierin Lim, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore


Pia Bruce and Mrinalini Venkatachalam, Singapore Committee for UN Women, Singapore; Honor Harger, ArtScience Museum, Singapore; Isaac Kerlow, Earth Observatory of Singapore, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore; Sami Kizilbash, Google, Singapore; Kiruthika Ramanathan, Maker Faire, Singapore; Vanessa Rheinheimer, Engineers without Borders, Singapore; Sierin Lim, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Ordering the Ethnic Minorities in the Southwest of China: Technology of Communication, Herb, and Race Taxonomy


Dong Yuyu, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China

Chair and Commentator:

Niu Weixing, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China


“New Communication Technology of Telephone and Telegram among the Tibetans of Sichuan in the Early Twentieth Century: Political Control and Social Impact,” Dong Yuyu, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China; “Conceptualizing an Ethnographic Body: Technology of Body [End Page 219] Measuring and Observation in the Southwest of China in the First Half of the Twentieth Century,” Zhu Jing, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom; “Producing Knowledges about an Herbal Medicine: The Caterpillar Fungus,” Hu Su, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Animals and Technology: In the Sea


Dolly Jørgensen, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden


Sverker Sörlin, Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden


“Peering beneath the Surface: Technologies of Seeing Underwater Life in Public Aquariums, 1853–2015,” Dolly Jørgensen, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden; “Extending Laboratory Work into the Sea: A Study on Technology of Milkfish Artificial Propagation in Taiwan,” Chein Kragen, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom; “Development of Technology in an Ornamental Fish Farm of Singapore due to Government Pressure,” Delfinn Tann, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Cinema and the History of Technology in Korea in the 1960s and 1970s


Sungook Hong, Seoul National University, South Korea Chair and Commentator: Tae-Ho Kim, Hanyang University...


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