The social aspects of science benefited a special section in the Science Department, headed by Borg Michelsen. It was concerned by many activities:
- Panels about the social aspects of science, October 1947. They were followed by two organized discussions about "Food and Mankind", and about "Energy in the Service of Man". Books were published for the general public, and scientific papers on the same subjects. Another was published on "Science and Freedom".
- Impact (1950), a journal dedicated to science and society, supposed to publish papers on the impact of science upon society, but also on the impact of society upon science. It started by analytic bibliographies and reprints of papers from known scientists. In the 60s, it reduced to the one-way impact of science on society.
- Popularization of science was another important field of action for Unesco, with the worldwide circulation of scientific exhibitions, books, guides, exchanges of know-how and practices, etc.
- Finally Unesco attempted to co-ordinate worldwide the Associations for the Advancement of Science. A first meeting took place in Paris, September 1950, with 14 associations. It met a strong support from the recently-founded Brazilian Association, whose aims were similar to Unesco with Needham's periphery principle. The main associations, the British and American ones, were more reluctant, having their own international links, and needing no support from Unesco.