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05 January 2011


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Jim Grozier

Tom - I know I asked this question at the STS seminar, but I am still not entirely sure of the mechanics of how you choose people. I mean, unless you have a wealth of contacts and inside knowledge already, do you just contact all the possible institutions and research groupsand ask for lists? Or do you consult certain key groups who might be in a good position to know who to talk to? I am thinking, amongst others, of the IOP's History of Physics Group here; I have written a short report of the STS talks for the Group's newsletter (which sadly may not come out for several months) and it occurs to me that they also may be able to advise on who is worth talking to, and, in the context of Jane Gregory's remark, on a priority order for talking to them.

Jim Grozier.


Hi Jim,

Unfortunately the detailed reply I wrote for this has disappeared into the electronic ether, but I think it's a subject that deserves a blog post of its own, so I'll write one later!

You're quite right, we do ask historical groups to suggest potential interviewees. It's a very effective way of 'borrowing expertise' and has the added bonus that recommendations are often made by people who have some personal insight into the interviewee, after meeting them at lecture for example, rather than just pulling their name out of a book because they designed something or other.

That said there's rarely just one reason why we interview anyone, there tend to be a few concerns coming together at once.


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