Daniele Archibugi and Andrea Filippetti
“ideas, knowledge, art, hospitality, travel – these are the things which should of their nature be international” (John Maynard Keynes, 1933)
It is a great pleasure to present in this series dedicated to global policy a collection of fresh papers devoted to science, technology, and innovation. The realm of knowledge is, in fact, an area which is most contributing to the coming of a genuine global society. The community of learned, what in the Enlightenment was labeled the Republic of Letters, has been one of the first components of society to challenge existing geographical and political boundaries, exploring and establishing interactions across different spaces. Medieval cloisters, academic circles, and, more recently, universities and research centers, have welcomed contributions from outsiders and have often been free land for anybody willing to exchange ideas. Scientists as well as craftsmen have been early frequent travelers to learn what other communities were offering and to disseminate the outcome of their ingenuity. Driven by the passion for knowledge and in search of personal rewards, the community of learned has been one of the great vehicles for disseminating ideas, know-how, artefacts, products, and techniques. Long before the word entered into the jargon of our age, knowledgeable people have been mighty pioneers of globalization.
The relationship ...