Mechanical engineering in the Netherlands in the nineteenth century: technology without a professional community

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Technology was an essential factor in the dramatic changes in society which can be summed up as the Industrial Revolution. On the one hand, it caused transformations in society, but on the other hand technology was greatly influenced by society itself. This interaction can be shown through the ways in which people dealt with technology and the knowledge on which technical applications are based. For ages, technology had been the work of craftsmen who had learned their trade in the workshop. The major change in the nineteenth century was the rise of professional groups, like engineers, that placed new requirements on the education of technicians. Practical training was considered insufficient and would have to be replaced by a more formal education at a technical school. This process has since been referred to by sociologists and historians of technology as the transition from a “shop culture” to a “school culture”.1 At the same time, the nature of technological knowledge changed from an entirely experience-based knowledge to an increasingly scientific one. During the nineteenth century, technology and science became more and more intertwined, a phenomenon which is generally called the scientification of technology.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTechnological development and science in the industrial age : new perspectives on the science-technology
EditorsP.A. Kroes, M. Bakker
Place of PublicationDordrecht
PublisherKluwer Academic Publishers
ISBN (Print)0-7923-1898-6
Publication statusPublished - 1992

Publication series

NameBoston studies in the philosopy of science


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