A. (Azadeh) Achbari, MA

Azadeh Achbari is affiliated to the Faculty of Science of the VU University Amsterdam as a PhD-researcher. She has studied European Studies at the University of Amsterdam and the research master Historical and Comparative Studies of the Sciences and Humanities (HCSSH) at the University of Utrecht. She has received a Mozaiekbeurs from NWO for her PhD project at the VU University.

PhD research: Dutch involvement in global science: network building and the rise of nineteenth-century meteorology

My PhD project concerns the Dutch involvement in international marine and atmospheric research in the nineteenth century. I explore how knowledge of weather conditions became a matter of prime concern and gained increasing relevance in the globalizing world of colonial expansion and maritime trade. Despite a growing awareness of the need for international cooperation, meteorology was a contested field. My project looks at the forces and mechanisms that supported or impeded cooperation and scientific network building. It analyzes how academic men of science and naval officers struggled for authority in the emerging field. It studies the tensions between personal and professional aims, scientific ambitions and practical interests, and national and global concerns. Nineteenth-century meteorology has a fascinating history, which sheds light on general topics in the history of science ranging from the complexities of boundary disputes to the creation of scientific authority and processes of discipline formation.

Supervisors: Prof. dr. Frans van Lunteren and prof. dr. Karel Davids

E-mail: a.achbari@vu.nl


  • ‘Science at Sea and the Origins of Meteorology,’ in: Locations of Knowledge.(Book chapter, forthcoming in 2013).
  • ‘Building Networks for Science. The First International Maritime Conference 1853.’ (Journal article under review)
  • ‘Dutch Skies, Universal Laws. The Genesis of Buys Ballot’s Law.’ (Journal article under review)