Historical Records of Australian Science Historical Records of Australian Science Society
The history of science, pure and applied, in Australia and the southwest Pacific

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Changing Ideas about the Environment in Australia: Learning from Stockholm

Libby Robin


Libby Robin with Max Day This paper explores Australia’s responses to questions around ‘the environment’, particularly in the period from the 1960s-80s, showing how they were informed in varying amounts by international science, by the emerging aesthetics of the idea of the environment and by social movements, including one later known as ‘environmentalism’. The rise of ‘integrated science’, particularly Big Science and international collaborations in science, modelling and the information technology revolution all shaped the interdisciplinary expertise that frames ‘the environment’ still. It is, however, very rare to find an individual like Max Day, whose biography enables a re-examination of the way thinking about the environment shaped strategic national thinking, public science and popular concerns including national parks management across the second half of the twentieth century.

HR17004  Accepted 03 March 2017

© Australian Academy of Science 2017