The Whats of a Scientific Life
This book completes a scientific life trilogy of books following on from the Hows (i.e. skills) and the Whys is now the Whats of a scientific life. Starting with just what is science, then on to what is physics, what is chemistry and what is biology the book discusses career situations in terms of types of obstacles faced. There follow examples of what science has achieved as well as plans and opportunities. The contexts for science are dependencies of science on mathematics, how science cuts across disciplines, and the importance of engineering and computer software. What science is as a process is that it is distinctly successful in avoiding or dealing with failures. Most recently a radical change in what is science is the merger of the International Council of Scientific Unions and the International Social Sciences Council.
- Dissects what is science and its contexts
- Provides wide ranging case studies of science and discovery based directly on the author’s many decades in science
- The author has outstanding experience in mentoring and career development, and also in outreach activities for the public and students of all ages
- The world of science today involves a merger of ‘the sciences’ and the ‘social sciences’
About the Author
Part I Introduction
1 What Is the Scientific Life?
2 What Is Physics?
3 What Is Chemistry?
4 What Is Biology?
Part II Scientific Career Choices: What to Do When Faced With …
8 Traffic Lights
Part III Examples of What Science Delivers or Will Deliver in the Future
11 With Physics We Can See Atoms
12 Acceleration of Chemical Reactions by Catalysts: A Wonder of the Natural World
13 Understanding Colour: Paintings, Camouflage, Clothes and Cosmetics
14 The Universe Exists and the Big Bang ‘Start’ of the Universe: The ‘Red Shift’ and the Expansion of the Universe
15 Is There Life Elsewhere in the Universe? The Role of the Square Kilometre Array Radio Astronomy Project
16 Predicting Climate Change on Earth
Part IV Science and Mathematics: Across the Disciplines and Side by Side With Engineering
17 Science and Mathematics: Newtonian Dynamics and Molecular Dynamics
18 Science across the Disciplines: Curiosity Respects No Science Subject Boundaries
19 Science Side by Side with Engineering
Part V Science Is a Process
20 Successes Involve Striving to Avoid Failures in Science
Part VI A Trend: The Coming Together of the Sciences and the Social Sciences
21 The International Council for Science: A Very Important Event
Appendices My Reviews of Books Regarding the Whats of a Scientific Life
Appendix A1: The Social Function of Science, by J. D. Bernal
Appendix A2: The Effective Scientist: A Handy Guide to a Successful Scientific Career, by Corey J. A. Bradshaw
Appendix A3: Scientific Leadership, by J. W. (Hans) Niemantsverdriet and Jan-Karel Felderhof
Appendix A4: Managing Science: Developing Your Research, Leadership and Management Skills, by K. Peach
Appendix A5: Writing Chemistry Patents and Intellectual Property: a Practical Guide, by Francis J. Waller
Appendix A6: The Scientific Method: Reflections from a Practitioner, by M. di Ventra
“A lot of thought about what science is, and experience about what the scientific life involves, has gone into this book by John Helliwell. In fact John has become a figure head for his work in physics and chemistry and also delving into biology. His book is within the Global Science Education Book Series and which, close to my heart, is the important science education role that the Catalyst Science Discovery Centre and Museum in Widnes has and where I am the Chair of Trustees of the Charitable Trust that manages it. I warmly welcome this new book, not least in which John highlights enzyme catalysis and the International Year of the Periodic Table 2019, it even includes a photograph of Mendeleev’s visit to Manchester.”
- Dr Diana Leitch MBE, FRSC, Deputy University Librarian, University of Manchester, and Chair of Trustees of the Catalyst SDC and Museum, Widnes, UK