Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 80.djvu/415

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411
SCIENCE AND INTERNATIONAL GOOD WILL

postal and copyright conventions or the International Bureau of the American Republics, are semi-scientific in character. Still others are concerned with the applications of science or with scientific research. Examples of these are the International Bureau of Weights and Measures at Paris, the International Geodetic Bureau at Strasburg, the International Institute of Agriculture at Rome, the International Catalogue of Scientific Literature at London, the Nobel Institutes at Stockholm and the Naples Zoological Station. There are international committees on electrical units, on mapping the earth and the skies, on deep-sea exploration and the like. We have attained a common calendar and a meridian of Greenwich with standard time. The metric system is becoming universal, and there is no reason why the gram of pure gold should not be adopted as a monetary standard. The exact definition of boundaries and other applications of science to international questions do away with the misunderstandings that may lead to war. International cooperation in science and scholarship and in their applications has reached such dimensions that it may be that the time has come when a truly international university might be established to advantage. If each nation would reduce its armaments to the extent of one per cent, and devote the money to the establishment and support of an international university, this step would in itself reduce the risks of war by more than one per cent. Such an institution could consequently be established without cost, and would be of vast intellectual, social and economic benefit to the world. It could be placed in Holland, Belgium or Switzerland, or perhaps still better in a territory made international for the purpose, such as one of the channel islands or Monte Carlo, wherever conditions of access, climate and environment would be most favorable. The conduct of such a territory and institution would give profitable practise in international cooperation. The high traditions of the university would be made tributary to international good-will and would themselves be further developed for the benefit of universities everywhere. Libraries and museums of international scope for the preservation of standards, type specimens, archives, etc., might to advantage be gathered together. Research institutions could be established by states or by private endowment; for the scientific work which is not primarily of benefit to a single individual or even to a single nation, can most properly be supported by all. By the establishment of an international university the nations would in part repay, or at least acknowledge, the debt which they owe to science for its services on behalf of the peace and welfare of the world.