The Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology (IHPST) is the successor to the "Institute for the History of Science", which was founded in 1932, later amending its name in 1933, under the aegis of the University of Paris, to "Institute for the History of Science and Technology". In 2002 the Joint Research Unit named "Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology" was created under the trusteeship of the CNRS and of the University Paris-1Panthéon Sorbonne (see “History”).
Intellectual foci and emphases have shifted over time from the history of science (1932-1970) to logic (1970-2002) and the philosophy of science (2002 - present). The Institute has nevertheless continued to bring together researchers of both strong philosophical and scientific backgrounds.
Use of the disciplinary label "Philosophy of Science" does not betray a marked preference for a particular school of thought or methodology neither does it reflect a bias toward select research topics. Indeed, the latter may and do vary with respect to the members who make up a given unit. Methods currently practised in the philosophy of science such as conceptual analysis and other formal and historical approaches are also encouraged to the extent that the primary objective informing their application remains philosophical in thrust.
IHPST is presently composed of five research teams:
- History and Philosophy of Science
- Philosophy of Biology and Medicine
- Logic, Language, Philosophy of Mathematics
- Philosophy of Physics, Scientific Understanding, Unity of Science
- Decision, Rationality, Interaction
Each researcher is principally associated with one of the above research teams. These research teams do not, however, operate independently from one another as collaborations and crosscutting interactions are encouraged.