Geni ribelli. La scienza aperta nell'immagine pubblica di due biologi


  • Alessandro Delfanti McGill University, Montreal



open science, public communication of science, cultural studies, digital media, justificatory regimes


Open science is a form of knowledge production that relies on the open sharing of information through digital media. In this article I wonder which scientists’ cultural elements sustain new open science practices. Against the celebrations of the revival of a 20th century Mertonian ethos of disinterest, I suggest that an ethos of openness can include justifications related to sharing as well as features such as anti-bureaucracy rebellion, hedonism and search for profit. It is a recombination of the modern scientist’s ethos with cultural systems related to hacking and information technologies. To show this emergence and thus the importance of hacker cultures for contemporary societies, I studied the public images related to the establishing of two open access genetic databases, and in particular the two biologists who lead those projects: Ilaria Capua and Craig Venter. This recombination maintains an ambivalence: while both cases are geared against today’s incumbents’ concentration of power, the justificatory system they have in common does not exclude entrepreneurship and profit.



How to Cite

Delfanti, A. (2014). Geni ribelli. La scienza aperta nell’immagine pubblica di due biologi. Tecnoscienza – Italian Journal of Science & Technology Studies, 4(2), 27–49.