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Oct. 30: Society for History of Technology Presents Da Vinci Medal to Carnegie Mellon Professor


Jonathan Potts                       

Society for History of Technology Presents
Da Vinci Medal to Carnegie Mellon Professor

PITTSBURGH — The Society for the History of Technology has awarded its Leonardo da Vinci Medal to David Hounshell, the David M. Roderick Professor of Technology and Social Change in the Department of History at Carnegie Mellon University.

hounshellThe Leonardo da Vinci Medal, the society's highest honor, goes to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the history of technology through research, teaching, publication and other activities. The organization bestowed the award on Hounshell at its 50th anniversary celebration this month in Washington, D.C.

Hounshell, a faculty member at Carnegie Mellon since 1991, also has an appointment in the Department of Social and Decision Sciences and works closely with students and faculty in the Department of Engineering and Public Policy. His research includes the rise of industrial research in the U.S. and the problems of managing scientific and technical research in organizations, and the influence of the Cold War on the pursuit of science and technology in the U.S. He is a past president and vice president of the Society for the History of Technology and has served on many of its committees.

Hounshell's numerous publications include the seminal "From the American System to Mass Production 1800-1932," and, co-authored with John Kenly Smith Jr., "Science and Corporate Strategy: Du Pont R&D, 1902-1980." The former won the society's Dexter Prize in 1987, and the latter received the Newcomen Prize for business history in 1992.

"I am deeply honored to receive the Society for the History of Technology's Leonardo da Vinci Medal. I thank the many teachers from whom I have learned in this society and who were anxious to learn from me, and also the many students with whom I have worked, who have also invariably taught me," Hounshell said.