Carlos Rodrigo Sanhueza Cerda

Visiting Scholar (Jan 2018-Mar 2018)

Full Professor

Carlos Sanhueza Cerda is Full Professor at the Universidad de Chile. After completing degrees in history and geography, he earned his PhD in history at the University of Hamburg, Germany. His research interests mainly comprise matters relating to the history of science in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, especially the circulation of travelers and knowledge between Latin America, Europe, and North America.

The main focus of Sanhueza’s research is the history of globalization and the circulation of knowledge. He has studied the network of science museums, focusing on the Chilean side of the exchange of natural objects between Chile, Brazil, Argentina, and Germany. He has also studied knowledge transfer in the formation of geography as a discipline in Chile. He is currently examining the formation of astronomical observation networks between Chile, Argentina, Germany, and the United States (1850–1910).

As part of the umbrella project, Global Perspectives of Knowledge, Sanhueza’s research at the MPIWG will investigate the dynamics of the globalization of knowledge in its local manifestations. Using nineteenth-century Chile as a case study, the research seeks to understand the global dimension of science: on what scale and in which institutional spaces it took place. In this sense, the main guiding questions are: How can the history of science be studied in a way that includes the local? Can institutions offer a way of studying local-global relations of knowledge? The two main aspects of the research are the movement of collections and natural objects between natural history museums, and the installation of astronomical observation points in a network that created links mainly between Chile and Germany, but also between other South American countries and the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and to a certain extent, even Russia.

Presentations, Talks, & Teaching Activities

Natural objects in movement

University of Valencia, Spain


Der Himmel aus dem Süden. Die Sternwarte von Santiago de Chile (1852–1927)

University of Marburg, Germany


Transnational production of knowledge about Chilean glaciers

University of Bielefeld, Germany

National History Museum of Santiago de Chile (1853–1904)

University of Eichsttät, Germany

Grenzwissen und transnationales Verflechtungen: Hans Steffen und die Einführung der Disziplin Geographie in Chile

Ibero-American Institute, Berlin

Das Wissen in einer Vitrine: das Museo Nacional de Santiago de Chile (1853–1904)

University of Bielefeld, Germany

Prácticas de mediación científica. El Museo Nacional de Chile (1853–1904)

Freie Universität Berlin

Prácticas de mediación científica. El Museo Nacional de Santiago. Fines del siglo XIX, comienzos del XX

University of Tarapaca, Chile

El embrujamiento alemán. Circulación de saberes e identidad

Universität zu Köln, Germany