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Book Review: Randall Wakelam’s The Science of Bombing September 10, 2010

Posted by Will Thomas in EWP Book Club.
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The following book review appears in Isis 101 (September 2010): 671-672.

© 2010 by The History of Science Society, and reprinted here according to the guidelines of the University of Chicago Press.

Randall T. Wakelam.
The Science of Bombing: Operational Research in RAF Bomber Command. ix + 347 pp., illus., apps., index. Toronto/London: University of Toronto Press, 2009. $55 (paper).
William Thomas

During World War II, scientists worked for the British, Canadian, and American military services to study plans, tactics, training, and procedures to see whether military practices made sense in light of up‐to‐date information from the field. The manner of this work varied from conducting special investigations, to parsing statistics, to building sophisticated mathematical models of such military operations as hunting for U‐boats. This work was known in Britain as “operational research” (OR) and was later established as its own profession. (more…)