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Geert Somsen is Associate Professor in the History of Knowledge at the Athena Institute. Splitting his job with Maastricht University. He has held visiting positions at Columbia University, Uppsala Universitet, the University of California, San Diego, and research institutes in Berlin and Rome. Most recently he received the Röhm and Haas fellowship at the Science History Institute in Philadelphia.

Somsen was PhD training coordinator at the Netherlands Graduate School for Science and Technology Studies, WTMC. He was jury member and chair of the Reingold Prize of the History of Science Society. He is co-founder and editor-in-chief of the Journal for the History of Knowledge.

Besides his academic work, Somsen writes opinion pieces for Dutch national newspapers as well as international magazines, such as Times Higher Education. He is a regular speaker at Studium Generale programs and has recently been involved in a podcast audio production.


Somsen's research focuses on international dimensions of science over the past two centuries. He has widely published in the top journals of his field on scientific internationalism, the belief that science can be a model for peaceful cooperation. Besides, he is interested in how scientists perform international relations. He has recently finished a European-funded collaborative project called The Scientific Conference: A Social, Cultural, and Political History. He is currently turning his gaze to the legacy of European imperialism in international science.


Somsen's teaching moves between history of knowledge, international history, and science and technology studies. He has taught widely in undergraduate and graduate programs and has been program director at BA, MA, and PhD levels as well. Outside of the Netherlands he has lectured and taught master classes at Columbia, Uppsala, and the National Research University in Moscow.


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