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Message posted on 30/09/2023

Eu-SPRI 2024 conference call for tracks & special sessions: “Governing Technology, Research, and Innovation for Better Worlds”

Eu-SPRI 2024 conference call for tracks & special sessions “Governing Technology, Research, and Innovation for Better Worlds”

Submission Deadline: 5 November 2023

The 2024 Eu-SPRI Annual Conference will be hosted by the Knowledge, Transformation, and Society (KiTeS) group at the University of Twente Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences in Enschede, NL, in collaboration with other groups within the university. The main conference will take place on 5 to 7 June with a preceding Early Career Event on 4 June.

The conference theme is Governing Technology, Research, and Innovation for Better Worlds, and the organising committee are now welcoming academic researchers from a broad range of disciplines, as well as STI policymakers, to submit proposals for tracks and special (stand-alone) sessions.

Governing Technology, Research, and Innovation for Better Worlds

Policies for science, technology, and innovation (STI) can, among other things, be understood as attempts to create a better world. But what world is better, for what, for whom? Political, moral, and efficiency-economic values influence the direction and instruments of STI governance, sometimes explicitly, as in the recent shifts in STI governance to mission-oriented or challenge-based approaches, and sometimes in more implicit or hidden manners. Competing worldviews of actors involved in STI policymaking go hand in hand with questions of justice and equality, importance and irrelevance. The conference invites to identify and discuss the explicit and implicit, competing and complementary normative orientations that drive STI policy and research in the many contexts where it takes place.

Subject Matters for Tracks and Special Sessions

Where STI takes place, we find sites of world-making. The conference will explore and debate (a) what conceptions of “better worlds” are being pursued by STI policies and (b) how they are assumed to be achieved and designed. Also: What is the role of STI policy research in all that? In general, the conference will explore a range of questions including:

  • How are “better worlds” cognitively constituted, socially negotiated, politically justified, culturally constructed, technically and materially equipped, or economically priced? How are “better world” claims adopted and implemented through STI governance and policy?
  • What counts as “value” and “valuable”, and as “good” or “better” in STI governance and policy – and what does not?
  • How can STI governance and policy address justice and equality, and injustice and inequality?

See further suggested examples on the conference website here.

Submission Details for Tracks and Special Sessions

  • Proposals for tracks may include different types of sessions such as full or early-stage research paper sessions, debates, policy dialogue sessions and/or a mixture of these. Proposals for stand-alone special sessions are also welcome.
  • Proposals should contain 500 words maximum including a title, organisers’ details, and session/track description, including details about the interaction mode and a list of speakers/guests (if you propose a closed session/part to a track, or if you apply for support budget).
  • Tracks/sessions can be proposed by (at least) two organisers. Those selected for the conference will be asked to provide guidance for participants applying through the conference ‘Call for Papers’, and then support the conference organizers and the international scientific committee in reviewing the papers and organizing their track or special session. We would like to emphasise that tracks/sessions with external guests must definitely be planned and clarified very early in order to have any chance of being held at all. In our experience, appointments with guests cannot be made at short notice. Only proposals with clear information about guests seem plausible to us.

  • We can offer a travel subsidy of up to 1000 Euros for a maximum of 5 Tracks/Special Sessions (first come, first serve) on request (for travel costs for track/session participants who cannot settle these costs institutionally). Tracks/Special Sessions organisers need to apply directly with their proposal with a cost estimation and a list of the names of the planned beneficiaries and an explanation why support is needed and why the grant will make the difference for organising the session. Eligibility criteria are relevancy and need. The final decision is at the discretion of the organising committee.
  • If you have a disproportionate number of members in your track who are traveling a far distance and you feel this requires special support, please, address this in your application for further discussion. There will be travel grants and conference waivers for specific circumstances. More details will be provided when registration opens.

Please, submit your proposal on the submission page by 5 November 2023 at the latest. Organisers will be notified of the acceptance of their proposals prior to the opening of the Call for Papers.

For further details, please, visit the conference website.

If you need help with proposal submission, please, contact

On behalf of the Organising Committee, Peter Stegmaier

Dr Peter Stegmaier | Assistant Professor Knowledge, Transformation & Society (KiTeS) section Department of Technology, Policy and Society (TPS) Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences (BMS) University of Twente, The Netherlands |

New book series: 'Destabilisation, Discontinuation, Decline ⎯ System Transformations and Endings' with Edward Elgar, edited by Peter Stegmaier, Bruno Turnheim, Lea Fünfschilling, Frédéric Goulet

Recent publications: Koretsky, Z., Stegmaier, P., Turnheim, B., & van Lente, H. (Eds.). (2023). Technologies in Decline: Socio-Technical Approaches to Discontinuation and Destabilisation. Routledge. [PDF] Aukes, E., Stegmaier, P., & Schleyer, C. (2022). Guiding the guides: Doing ‘Constructive Innovation Assessment’ as part of innovating forest ecosystem service governance. Ecosystem Services, 58. Liersch, C, Stegmaier, P (2022): Keeping the forest above to phase out the coal below: The discursive politics and contested meaning of the Hambach Forest. Energy Research & Social Science, 89, 102537. Loft, L., Schleyer, C., Klingler, M., Kister, J., Zoll, F., Stegmaier, P., Aukes, E., Sorge, S., & Mann, C. (2022). The development of governance innovations for the sustainable provision of forest ecosystem services in Europe: A comparative analysis of four pilot innovation processes. Ecosystem Services, 58.

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