In January 1947 Albert Einstein wrote an open letter ("Dear friend, I write you ..") which ended with the following words: "We scientists recognize our inescapable responsibility to carry to our fellow citizens an understanding of the simple facts of atomic energy and its implications for society. In this lies our only security and our only hope -- we believe that an informed citizenry will act for life and not death".

Of course, today serious implications for society also come from other technologies (e,g biological science, computer science and information technologies) and more generally from the tumultuous developments in various branches of knowledge and their applications.

When he was President of the Accademia dei Lincei, Edoardo Amaldi founded the SICA Working Group (Sicurezza Internazionale e Controllo degli Armamenti - International Security and Arms Control) and started a series of conferences on the impact of science and technology on society (now called Amaldi Conferences, that still today are held every two years).

The Russell-Einstein Manifesto of 1955 ended with an invitation to the international scientific community to come together and work to make the world less dangerous and more just. Thus, in 1957 the Pugwash Conferences on Science and Worlds Affairs (Nobel Peace Prize in 1995) were born, that are still held all over the world today.

Why an Interdisciplinary Group on STS in Pisa

The numerous activities proposed and supported by the CNR Area della Ricerca di Pisas make it possible and fruitful to set up an Interdisciplinary Group (GI, hereinafter) at Area level. For some time, in the context of CNR Institutes in Pisa and the CNR Area della Ricerca di Pisa, numerous activities and initiatives for scientific dissemination and discussion on the relationship between science, technology and society have been carried out, which fall fully within the sphere of the Third Mission in the social, educational and cultural fields. These activities are implemented thanks to the willingness and voluntary and spontaneous contribution of various Colleagues, see, for example,Areaperta and Aula 40.

Furthermore, in Pisa, for almost forty years, CNR Colleagues have been working in associations and bodies such as the Scientific Council of the Union of Scientists for Disarmament (Unione degli Scienziati Per Il Disarmo, USPID), the Council of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs (1995 Nobel Peace Prize), the Board of Directors of the International School On Disarmament And Resarch on Confliicts (ISODARCO, recipient in 2017 of the Medal of the President of the Republic and, in 2016, of a letter of praise from President Obama), the Interdisciplinary Center of Sciences for Peace of the University of Pisa (Centro Interdisciplinare di Scienze per la Pace, CISP), the Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility, the Working Group of the Accademia dei Lincei on International Security and Arms Control (Sicurezza Internazionale e Controllo degli Armamenti, SICA), the CINI Laboratory on Computer Technology and Society (Laboratorio su Informatica e Società del Consorzio Interuniversitario Nazionale per l’Informatica, CINI-LabIeS) In particular, much of the USPID's activity has seen Pisa as the center of gravity and the National Secretariat of the Association for years has had, and still has, its headquarters in Pisa.

Mission

The specific mission of the GI-STS is to facilitate informed and rigorous discussion on the impact on Society of Scientific Research and Technology Transfer and the consequent responsibility of scientists and technologists.

Contact

Giuliano Colombetti (email: giuliano.colombetti [AT] ibf.cnr.it)