Department of Science and Technology Studies
University of Wollongong, NSW 2522, Australia
15 June 1995
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research)
Yesterday I had a good time meeting Ross Milbourne and Graham Hugo from the Social Sciences & Humanities discipline panel of the ARC, in several different sessions. Graham Hugo met with [me] as a current grant holder, and he recommended that I contact you concerning one matter in particular.
A bit of background. As you know, three years ago I was successful in obtaining a large ARC. This year my application, built on the most important area growing out of the previous research, was eliminated in the first cull. As a result of discussions yesterday it became obvious that the reason is that this year there is no panel suitable for my proposal. My topic is a combination of peace research and STS. Last time, when I was successful, it went to "other social science" (unless that was the year that "science and technology policy" was a category -- I can't remember). This year "other social science" wasn't an option, nor was there any STS-related category, so I designated "sociology" -- and it seems that since my project is not sociological in any traditional sense it didn't obtain a reasonable hearing.
Graham Hugo was impressed by my project, my progress on it and my track record. He will try to reinstitute the category "other social science" for next year. He suggested that you can help by writing to the ARC supporting the reintroduction of the "other social science" category, perhaps mentioning that there are excellent applications from Wollongong that seem to have been unfairly penalised because of this omission. (If you want to support an STS or science and technology policy category too, that's fine, but "other social science" is important for others who aren't captured by the specified categories.)