People

Juan-Andres Leon

Visiting Scholar (Feb 2017-Dec 2018)

PhD

Juan-Andreas Leon Gomez joined the Research Program on the History of the Max Planck Society (GMPG) in 2017. Juan-Andres studied physics and history before completing his PhD in the History of Science with a dissertation entitled "Citizens of the Chemical Complex," in which he explored the world of science philanthropy of Imperial and Weimar Germany and its impact in the applied sciences, physics, mathematics and astronomy. His work lies at the intersection of social and environmental history, and focuses on the transition from personal and philanthropic support networks towards national science organizations such as the Max Planck Society, as well as multinational scientific initiatives such as Atoms for Peace, CERN, and a multitude of astronomical observatories. Parallel to his academic trajectory, Juan-Andres has pursued a museum career that focuses on modern scientific instrumentation and computing.

At the GMPG, Juan-Andres’s research topic ““Cosmochemistry and Astroparticle Research in the MPG” looks at the West German participation in the construction of large astronomical observatories in foreign countries in the second half of the twentieth century, a story in which geographical necessity tested the boundaries between scientific autonomy and the democratic responsibility of scientists.