Announcing the Inaugural SSRC Fellow: Lorraine Daston

The Social Science Research Council (SSRC) is proud to announce that Professor Lorraine Daston will be its inaugural SSRC Fellow.

Professor Daston will be in residency at the SSRC during the first week of February 2019, during which she will lead a seminar on the topic of “Mechanical Rules before Machines: Rules and Paradigms.” She will deliver a public lecture on February 5, 2019, at the Roosevelt House in New York City.

The SSRC Fellow initiative invites distinguished scholars to the Council to strengthen research and programming in the areas in which we currently work or aspire to work. The SSRC Fellow program broadens the thematic purview of the Democracy Fellow program, which over the last three years has recognized Pierre Rosanvallon, Charles Taylor, and, most recently, Danielle Allen.

Lorraine Daston is director at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin. Daston has published on a wide range of topics in the history of science, including the history of probability and statistics, wonders in early modern science, the emergence of the scientific fact, scientific models, objects of scientific inquiry, the moral authority of nature, and the history of scientific objectivity. Recent books include How Reason Almost Lost Its Mind: The Strange Career of Cold War Rationality (with Paul Erickson et al., 2013) and Against Nature (forthcoming, 2019).

Her current projects include a history of rules, based on her 2014 Lawrence Stone Lectures at Princeton University; the emergence of Big Science and Big Humanities in the context of nineteenth-century archives; and the relationship between moral and natural orders.

Daston is the recipient of the Pfizer Award and Sarton Medal of the History of Science Society, the Schelling Prize of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences, the Lichtenberg Medal of the Göttingen Academy of Sciences, the Luhmann Prize of the University of Bielefeld, the Dan David Prize, and an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Princeton University. In addition to directing Department II of the Max Planck Institute, she is a regular visiting professor in the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago and Permanent Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin. Daston serves on the Board of Trustees of the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.