The Silicosis Project

A pioneering interdisciplinary approach

Silicosis is an innovative new research project combining history, medicine and the social sciences. The project deals with one of the deadliest occupational diseases in history, silicosis, caused by the inhalation of crystalline silica dust particles.

Directed by Paul-André Rosental, the five-year project was launched in June 2012, funded by a European Research Council Advanced Grant and based at Sciences Po’s Center for European Studies, in association with the Center for History. ERC Advanced Grants allow exceptional, established research leaders to pursue ground-breaking, high-risk projects that open new directions in research.

In addition to Professor Rosental, the Silicosis team is composed of two sociologists, a pulmonologist, a mineralogist, a post-doctoral researcher in historical demography and a project officer. The medical aspect of the project is carried out in collaboration with the Minapath laboratory of the Centre Hospitalier St Joseph-St Luc in Lyon. 

Here is an article of Le Journal du CNRS on the Silicosis Project

Silicosis: a ‘negotiated’ disease

One of the world’s oldest industrial diseases, silicosis was traditionally widespread in many industries (from construction to glasswork, stonecutting and sandblasting) – although mainly identified with mining in the public imagination.