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  • University of Manchester
  • Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona
  • Université Pierre et Marie Curie
  • Université de Strasbourg

TEUS: The Earth Under Surveillance
Geophysics, Climate Change and the Cold War Legacy

TEUS is a five-year research programme (2009-2014) funded by the European Research Council (ERC grant  241009), involving three leading history of science centres in the UK, France and Spain: the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine (University of Manchester), the Institut de recherche en sciences et technologie (Université de Strasbourg), the OSU Ecce Terra at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie, and the Centre d'Estudis d'Història de les Ciènces (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona).

The project explores the history of scientific studies of the earth and the environment, especially by examining how the Cold War shaped funding and research trajectories of key European institutions devoted to geophysical research. TEUS seeks to track down the ancestry of scientific studies on the earth and the environment, especially by examining how the Cold War shaped research and funding trajectories. Its more original feature will be the focus on the interplay (and mutual shaping) of geosciences and intelligence programmes, especially in the organisation of geophysical explorations.

The research team will assemble information from a variety of sources, including archival material from the US, Europe and Russia and interviews with prominent earth scientists. It will work in a transnational mode. National trends are mapped onto the broader geopolitical frame defined by the Cold War, and help to offer a historical understanding of contemporary debates over environmental and climate change.