Skip to main navigation Skip to main content
The University of Southampton
Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute

Dr Sam Robinson MA Hons, PhD, FrHistS

SMMI Research Fellow

Dr Sam Robinson's photo

I am a historian of Cold War science and technology with a particular focus on oceans history, as well as broader interests in the history of science diplomacy, past futures, working class British history. I am interested in the relationship between science and politics especially in terms of the global environment.

Following a MA degree in History from the University of Aberdeen, I completed a PhD in History of Science and Technology at the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine at the University of Manchester. I then went on to undertake Post-Doctoral Fellowships at the Universities of York (Sociology), Aberystwyth (History), Manchester (CHSTM) and have held teaching lectureships at the University of Kent (History) and the University of Cambridge (History and Philosophy of Science). Before joining the University of Southampton in September 2021.

I am an active international researcher and work within several European funded projects.  In January 2022 I will begin work on a new ERC funded project on the history of Data sharing within international science with colleagues at Manchester, Sao Paulo, and Peking Universities.


Research interests

My first book concerned the history of ocean science in Britain during the Cold War published as Ocean Science and the British Cold War State (Palgrave, 2018). It charts the rise of the National Institute of Oceanography from its inception following World War 2 through to the establishment of NERC in the late 1960s. It focuses on the political interface between science and the civil service in Britain during the period.

Following this work, I have been focusing developing research into the history of global Science Diplomacy. In 2017 with colleagues, I founded the international historical commission for Science, Technology and Diplomacy which is part of the ISC Division for the History of Science. I have also been a case study author and summer school tutor for the EU Horizon 2020 project “InsSciDE: Inventing a shared Science Diplomacy for Europe)” since 2018. Going forward I will be a member of the NEWORLDATA (2022-2026) project that seeks to chart a history of data sharing diplomacy within modern science.

My ongoing research interests include the contemporary history of science, technology and diplomacy, histories of climate change and the Anthropocene, and histories of technology and industry in post-war Britain, and scientific futures as well as engineering-imagineering. With a particular focus on the place of the oceans in all these histories.

Sort via: Type or Year


Book Chapter

Dr Sam Robinson
Southampton Marine and Maritime Institute University of Southampton Southampton Boldrewood Innovation Campus Southampton SO16 7QF

Share Share this on Facebook Share this on Twitter Share this on Weibo
Privacy Settings