Ombyggnad pågår : Lunds tekniska högskola och ingenjörsrollens förändring

Detta är en avhandling från History of Science and Ideas

Sammanfattning: This study deals with the transformation of institutions of higher technical education in Sweden. It situates those processes in the context of educational reforms during the second half of the 20th century. Lund Institute of Technology, Lunds tekniska högskola (LTH), is focused upon. It was founded in 1961 as a major addition to the expanding higher education system. As a newly established institution, LTH took its principal values and ideals from the older polytechnics. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the concepts “the polytechnical ideal” and “engineering science” came into use to denote the content and form of the engineering programs. These standards provided a stable ideological core and a common focus for a homogeneous set of stakeholders. Yet, these standards were challenged as the polytechnics became institutions of mass education and as the political influence over the economy and the norms of higher education increased. During the expansion of the education system, coordination of resources and integration of the institutions received top priority. This line of reasoning was especially significant in the fields of science and engineering. In a radical departure from established organizational form, LTH in 1969 therefore was integrated into Lund University. Previously Swedish polytechnics and universities had evolved in relative separation. From the 1970s onward, polytechnics came under pressure to reform their curricula in order to adjust to the attitudes, knowledge, and proficiency of the students. This process is traced in the development of LTH. The mission of the polytechnics also shifted in other respects, e.g. in terms of their role in regional innovation systems. The objective of the polytechnics within the educational system was modified, as was the position of engineers in society. Subsequently, the engineering profession of today has to be informed by a broader range of societal considerations than half a century ago.