Test text

Scherer, Heinrich, Critica quadri partita, in qua plura recens inventa, et emendata circa geographiae artificium, historiam, technicam, et astrologiam scitu dignissima explicantur, 1710
Original source owned by MPIWG Library

Dept. I

Structural Changes in Systems of Knowledge

Director: Jürgen Renn

T +49 30 22667 101/102
F +49 30 22667 124



Director (Since Mar 1994)

Dr., Professor, Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

History of Early Modern Mechanics, History of Relativity Theory; Interaction between Cognitive and Contextual Factors in the History of Science

Department I MPIWG

Photo: © 2017 www.setform.de.

Services & Administration

Researchers 2017–18


Visiting Scholar (1 Feb 2016-28 Feb 2018)


Music, Mathematics, and Experimental Science

Postdoctoral Fellow (1 Dec 2015-30 Sep 2017)


Visiting Scholar (1 Sep 2016-31 Dec 2018)


Architects and Engineers between Analytical Mechanics and Graphical Thinking

Predoctoral Fellow (1 Jul 2017-30 Sep 2017)

Research Scholar (Since Apr 2012)


Transformations of Verbal, Visual, and Manual Knowledge in Islamicate Societies and the Mediterranean World. The Objects I Study are Arabic and Persian Texts on the Steelyard, Arabic Translations of Euclid's Elements, Verbal and Visual Narratives, and Institutions

TOPOI Research Group Leader (1 Nov 2012-31 Dec 2018)

Dipl. Phys.


Research Scholar (1 May 2016-30 Sep 2019)

MA, Doctoral Candidate in Religious Studies, University of Amsterdam

The Earth in the Sky is like the Yolk of the Egg in the Egg White. Natural Philosophy in the Polemics of the Muslims of Medieval Iberia

Visiting Scholar (1 Jan 2017-30 Sep 2018)


Kunstwissenschaft c. 1900 as a "Transcultural" View of Art 'avant la lettre'


Visiting Scholar (1 May 2018-31 Aug 2018)

Vegetable - Animal - Transformation

Visiting Scholar (24 Sep 2017-7 Oct 2017)

PhD, Postdoctoral Researcher, Universidad de Sevilla

The Epistemological Transformation of Mechanics in the Nineteenth Century: Interactions between Mathematics, Physics, and Philosophy

Visiting Scholar (15 Feb 2018-31 Dec 2019)

CR1 Senior Research Fellow (tenured), CNRS–Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, University Diderot, Paris, France

The Development of the Euclidean Mathematical Tradition in the Early Modern Age: Translation, Transmission and Transformation of the Text of the Elements

Research Scholar (1 Jul 2016-30 Jun 2020)


Transmission and History of Antique Scientific Texts such as Ptolemy’s Geography, using Computational Humanities


Visiting Scholar (12 Jul 2017-18 Sep 2017)

PhD, Associate Professor, Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas, Tel Aviv University, Israel

Baroque Ghosts: Jesuits between Old and New Science

Visiting Scholar (Sep 2017-30 Sep 2017)

Professor Emeritus

"Fictions" in the Philosophy of the Eighteenth Century

Research Scholar (6 Nov 2017-31 Dec 2018)

MA, Doctoral Student, Freie Universität Berlin

Edition Elkana and Krois: Rethinking the Political Epistemology of Enlightenment. Dialogues with Ernst Cassirer

Research Scholar (1 Aug 2016-31 Jul 2019)



Max Planck Fellow (1 Apr 2016-31 Mar 2021)

Prof. Dr.


Visiting Scholar (24 Feb 2016-31 Dec 2018)

Prof. Dr. emeritus

Mitarbeit im Forschungsprofil moderne Physik der Abteilung sowie das von der PTB finanzierte Projekt "Geschichte der PTR im Dritten Reich"

Predoctoral Fellow (1 Apr 2016-31 Mar 2019)

MA, Doctoral Student, Technische Universität Berlin

Quantitative Physiological Reasoning at the Turn of the Seventeenth Century: The Work of Sanctorius Sanctorius

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (1 Oct 2017-15 Feb 2018)


Cartography in Sacroboscoʼs Tract “The Sphere”

Visiting Scholar (1 Dec 2016-31 Dec 2019)

Dr. phil., Professor Emeritus

Portraying, Connecting and Confronting Early Cultures of Organized Knowledge – and Drawing Consequences


Predoctoral Fellow (1 May 2017-31 Dec 2018)

Disaster Preparedness in Japan and Global Transfer of Knowledge, 1900-1965

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (6 May 2017-31 May 2019)

PhD, Doctoral Student, Technische Universität Berlin

Practical Knowledge between Field and Laboratory

Visiting Scholar (30 May 2018-30 Jul 2018)

Predoctoral Fellow (1 Jan 2016-31 Jul 2019)

MA, Doctoral Student, Humboldt Universität zu Berlin

Cometary Pamphlets and the Way they Present, Create, and Diffuse Natural Philosophic Knowledge


Visiting Scholar (1 Jun 2011-31 Dec 2017)


History of Physics in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries (esp. Atomic Physics and Institutional and Social Aspects)

Visiting Scholar (11 Sep 2017-15 Oct 2017)

PhD, Senior Lecturer, Cohn Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas

From Sonar to Quartz Clock: Technology and Physics in War, Academy, and Industry

Senior Research Scholar (Since Jul 1998)

Prof. Dr., Außerordentliche Professorin an der Universität Konstanz

"Useful Sciences," State Bureaucracy, and Industrialization in Prussia (c. 1760–1830)

Visiting Scholar (15 May 2018-31 Dec 2019)

Honorary Research Fellow, Department of History, University of Nottingham

The history of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs (Pugwash) in East and West Germany during the Cold War


Research Scholar (1 Jul 2013-31 Dec 2018)


Visiting Scholar (15 Mar 2013-15 May 2018)

PhD, President's Professor of Theoretical Biology and History of Biology, Arizona State University

History of Biology, Computational History of Science, Evolutionary Models of the Dynamics of Knowledge, Complexity Theory

Visiting Scholar (Since Mar 2006)

Dr., Außerordentlicher Professor an der Freien Universität Berlin

History of Science in Connection with History of Philosophy on the Basis of Social History; Sciences in Greek Antiquity; Early Modern Physics and Chemistry; History of Biology (Fifteenth to Eighteenth centuries)

Visiting Scholar (15 Feb 2018-15 Feb 2019)


Umbrella Project: Knowledge in and of the Anthropocene


Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (20 Apr 2018-19 Oct 2018)


Transregional Artistic Knowledge in Renaissance Siena

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (13 Mar 2017-12 Mar 2019)

PhD, Université Paris Diderot – Paris 7, Laboratoire SPHERE

Numerical Literacy in the Old Babylonian Kingdom of Larsa

Visiting Scholar (Sep 2017-16 Sep 2017)

PhD, Professor of History, University Foundation Professor

Paracelsus: Completing Nature, Recreating the Soul

Visiting Scholar (1 Apr 2017-31 Mar 2018)

PhD, Professor Emeritus, Hebrew University

Secularization and Scientific Development: Cause or Effect?

Predoctoral Fellow (1 Sep 2017-30 Jun 2020)

Transmission of Islamic Astronomy to Europe: Influence or Similarity of Structures?


Visiting Scholar (1 Nov 2010-30 Jun 2020)


History and Philosophy of Early Modern Science with a Special Focus on Epistemology, Cosmology, and Philosophy


Visiting Scholar (30 Nov 2017-12 Dec 2017)

PhD, Research Associate

Andean and Mesoamerican Cartography. Epistemology and Innovation; Innovative Moral Business and Finance of Capitalism


Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (1 Oct 2016-30 Sep 2018)

Dr. phil.

The Anthropocene on Backstage: Tracing the Earth System before Earth System Science

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (1 Feb 2018-31 Jan 2020)


The History of Black Holes

Research Scholar (1 Jan 2018-31 Dec 2018)


Visiting Scholar (1 Jan 2018-31 Mar 2018)

Full Professor

Global Networks and Local Institutions. The Dynamics of the Globalization of Knowledge at Play in the Mobility of Natural Objects and Astronomical Research in Nineteenth-century Chile

Research Scholar, Group Leader (Since Jul 2003)


Long-term Development of Spatial Cognition; History of Early Modern Mechanics; History of Modern Physics and Astronomy; History of Chinese Science

Research Program Coordinator, Senior Research Scholar (1 Jul 2015-31 May 2019)


History of the Max Planck Society

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (1 Apr 2016-31 Oct 2018)

The Ain Juj Water Conduit – Hydraulics and Isotope Chemistry of Sinter Accumulation

Visiting Predoctoral Fellow (1 Feb 2017-31 Dec 2017)

Publishing Policy and Decision-making Powers: Paul Rosbaud and the Role of Consultants in the Scientific Book Trade, c. 1925–1965

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (28 May 2018-27 Aug 2018)


Natural knowledge and Catholic Renewal in the Old and New Worlds

Research Scholar (9 Nov 2015-30 Sep 2019)


Convivencia Project; Reformist Objects

Visiting Scholar (1 May 2016-30 Apr 2019)

Lehre und Forschung des Göttinger Physikers Robert Wichard Pohl (1884-1976)

Visiting Scholar (8 May 2017-31 Dec 2018)

Dr. phil.

Fossile Moderne - Technische Materialitäten und Zeitregimes im Anthropozän


Research Scholar (1 Sep 2008-31 Dec 2019)


Visiting Scholar (26 Nov 2017-7 Dec 2017)

PhD, Professor

Cross-cultural Transmission and Reconstruction of Mechanics since the 17th Century

Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow (15 Jan 2018-14 Jan 2019)


The History of Energy Conservation as Agent of Energy Transition


Research Group Leader (Since Oct 1998)

Dr., Honorary Professor in History of Science at the Technische Universität in Berlin

Technology Transfer in Antiquity, Ancient Hydromechanics and Pneumatics, Early modern mechanics, Galileo Galilei, Shipbuilding, Pratolino Garden, Jesuits' Hydraulics, Early Modern Ballistics

Postdoctoral Fellow (15 Jul 2016-14 Jul 2020)

Dr. rer. nat.


Visiting Scholar (26 Oct 2016-25 Oct 2017)

PhD, Associate Professor, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Concessions of Interest and Struggles for Rights versus Technology Dependence: A Case Study of Jinpu Railway 1908-1937

Research Scholar (2 Oct 2017-31 Jan 2020)


Coal: A Global Object of Knowledge; Métissage: A Problem of European History

Research Scholar (Since Jan 2000)

Dipl. Phys.

Research IT


Visiting Scholar (22 Jan 2018-22 Feb 2018)

PhD, Senior Lecturer, Tel Aviv University

Theories, Models, and Phenomena: The Structure of Exact Natural Science in Greece, 400 BC–200 AD


Visiting Scholar (26 Nov 2017-7 Dec 2017)

Prof. Dr.

Cross-cultural Transmission and Reconstruction of Mechanics since the 17th Century