Robert Fox, Professor der Geschichtswissenschaft, lehrt an der Modern History Faculty der Universität Oxford. Fox' Forschungsschwerpunkt liegt im Bereich der Geschichte der physikalischen Wissenschaften seit 1700, wobei sein besonderes Interesse Frankreich und den Beziehungen zwischen Technologie, Wissenschaft und Industrie im modernen Europa gilt. Zur Zeit arbeitet Fox an einer Sozial- und Kulturgeschichte Frankreichs zwischen 1814 und 1918 sowie an einer Geschichte der Physik in Oxford seit 1850.
»If the Deutsches Museum stands in 2003 as Germany‘s most visited and best-loved museum, it does so in a museological world that has changed out of all recognition since its foundation in 1903. Financial pressures have pushed national museums to a degree of commercialism that threatens their core objectives in education and research; the beneficence of science and technology has been increasingly contested in an age of nuclear weapons and concerns about pollution and genetically modified organisms; and the ever more esoteric nature of scientific concepts and technological advances has raised unprecedented challenges for museum professionals. Faced with the alternatives of the science-centre approach pursued at the Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie in Paris since 1986 and the collection-oriented philosophy of the more traditional institutions, directors and curators have had to make difficult choices. A reflexion on the evolution of science museums over the last hundred years shows that the choices have always been difficult. But as the Deutsches Museum embarks on its second century of life, the problems have assumed a new urgency. What role is there in today’s museums for historical artefacts and the scholars who care for them? How are museums to convey a sense of the processes (as opposed to just the products) of science and technology? And how can collections-based museums, such as the Deutsches Museum, help in the most urgent task facing the modern Public Understanding of Science movement, that of engaging their visitors in debate about science, rather than simply instructing them?«