The Francis Bacon Award in the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology

Offered biennially in the amount of $20,000, the Francis Bacon Award is bestowed on an outstanding scholar whose work continues to have a substantial impact in the history of science, the history of technology, or historically-engaged philosophy of science.  The winner of the Bacon Award is invited to spend one term (10 weeks) as a Visiting Professor at Caltech to teach and lead a biennial conference that brings together the best younger and established scholars in the area of the Bacon Visiting Professor's specific interests.

In spring 2018, Niccolò Guicciardini visited Caltech as the most recent Francis Bacon Award recipient. Guicciardini, an associate professor in the Department of Human and Social Sciences at the Università degli studi di Bergamo in Italy, is a historian of the exact sciences in the modern period, with a particular interest in Isaac Newton. Guicciardini holds master's degrees in Physics and Philosophy and a PhD in the History of Mathematics. He is the author of four books, the latest being Isaac Newton on Mathematical Certainty and Method (MIT Press, 2009), and he has written chapters for many academic texts. Guicciardini is an executive committee member of the International Commission for the History of Mathematics and an elected effective member of the Académie Internationale d'Histoire des Sciences.

Please direct questions about the Francis Bacon Award to


Jürgen Renn (2014), Director, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science

Lisa Jardine (2012), Centre for Editing Lives and Letters, University College London, Renaissance Studies

Myles Jackson (2010), Gallatin School, New York University, History of Science

Naomi Oreskes (2008), Professor of History and Science Studies, Department of History, UC San Diego

Alexander Jones (2006), Professor of the History of the Exact Sciences in Antiquity, NYU Institute for the Study of the Ancient World

Lawrence Principe (2004), Drew Professor of the Humanities, Director of the Charles Singleton Center for the Study of Pre-Modern Europe, Department of the History of Science and Technology, Johns Hopkins University


Anachronism(s) in the History of Mathematics [April 13-14, 2018]

General Relativity at One Hundred [March 10-12, 2016]

Testimonies: States of Mind and States of the Body in the Early Modern Period [May 9-10, 2014]

Molecular Biology and Intellectual Property in the Age of Biocapitalism [May 6-7, 2011]

How the Cold War Transformed Science [May 7-9, 2010]

Ptolemy in Perspective: Use and Criticism of His Work from Antiquity to the Present [May 31-June 2, 2007]

Workshop on 18th Century Chemistry [April 21-June 2, 2005]