(Vienna, 26 March 2021) Together with her project partner, science historian Johannes Mattes (ÖAW), Cécile Philippe, university assistant at MedUni Vienna's Division of Nuclear Medicine (Department of Biomedical Imaging and Image-guided Therapy) has won the Austrian Academy of Sciences' Bader Award for the History of Natural Sciences for her pilot project "Concepts, Collaboration and Demarcations: Nuclear Medicine Research in Austria during the Cold War."
The substantive orientation and international positioning of nuclear medicine research in Austria stems from the processes that shaped the discipline, collaborative influences and professionalisation of the field during the Cold War period. Starting with the first clinical use of radiopharmaceuticals at the Department of Medicine II of Vienna’s General Hospital in 1950, the first independent divisions of nuclear medicine were established within Austrian hospitals during the 1970s and, in 1974, the European Society of Nuclear Medicine, based in Vienna, was founded. In 1991, the Vienna University Clinic for Nuclear Medicine was established as one of the best equipped facilities in Europe. The project that has won the Bader Award for the History of Natural Sciences focusses on the practices and formation of this new discipline and analyses the influence of Austrian research institutions and their international networks during the Cold War period. The authors first of all evaluated extensive documentation that had been preserved in the archives of state authorities and scientific institutions, professional societies, and other major actors. The project is relevant by virtue of the connectional role played by the Austrian nuclear medicine specialists and the communication platforms and formats they established on both sides of the Iron Curtain, thereby leaving a lasting impression on the scientific landscape in Europe.
About Cécile Philippe
Born in Paris in 1983, Cécile Philippe studied pharmacy at the University of Vienna. A subsequent PhD in natural sciences (University of Vienna) took her to the Medical University of Vienna's Department of Biomedical Imaging and Image-guided Therapy, where she was able to do the practical work for her dissertation. Since 2014, she has been working as a university assistant at the Medical University of Vienna's Division of Nuclear Medicine. Cécile Philippe's main research interests are the development and preclinical evaluation of new radiopharmaceuticals.