CfP: Science and Technology on the Silk Road: Past and Present Practices, Future Perspectives in Turkey

For the Turkologentag 2018: 3rd European Convention on Turkic, Ottoman & Turkish Studies Bamberg (Germany), September 19-21, 2018

Deadline: January 15, 2018

This panel, organized by Dr. Melike Şahinol (Orient-Institute Istanbul, “Human, Medicine, and Society”), Asst. Prof. Dr. Arsev Umur Aydinoglu (METU, TEKPOL Research Center) and Asst. Prof. Dr. Harun Kaygan (METU, Industrial Design), and co-organized by Cansu Guner-Birdal (Technical University Munich, Munich Center for Technology in Society), will focus on Studies on Science and Technology on the past and present Turkey, and on future perspectives on Science and Technology Studies in Turkey.

Historically Turkey has been for distant cultures and communities a locus for the exchange of diverse merchandise, of ideas and knowledge, of science and technology, not least medical and military technologies. Once a scientific, technological and philosophical hub, today the overwhelming pace of developments in fields of Science and Technology seems to have curbed the emergence of much-needed debates on the social dimensions of those developments and their historical precursors and homologues in Turkey. There is, for instance, the mind-blowing Human Enhancement Technologies (e.g. Reproductive Technology, Plastic Surgery, Human Genetic Engineering, Neurotechnology, Cyberware, 3D bioprinting, etc.) entering the public eye through science communication as well as fiction, even being encountered more and more often in everyday life. The almost-ubiquity of such technologies is in strong contrast with the institutional absence and academic underrepresentation of Social Studies of Science and Technology, together with the lack of institutionalized Technology Assessment in Turkey. Within such a picture, Turkey could be viewed as a contested space where manifold communities, organizations, government apparatuses, technologies, as well as diverse discourses, epistemologies, systems of belief and regimes of value co-exist in flux, contributing to the production and reception of scientific knowledge and technology.

We invite contributions that draw on case studies to critically engage with the socio-cultural, historical and techno/bio/political dimensions in Turkey, triggered by but not limited to following fields: Governance of S&T, Energy and Sustainable Development, Information and Communication Technologies, Industry 4.0, Emerging Technologies, Healthcare and Life Science. We highly encourage contributors on chasing specificities of Turkish examples possibly contributing to the general STS literature, while grounding the cases with sounded theories like socio-technical imaginaries, ANT or any other related conceptual bases.

Panel language will be English and Turkish.

Please send abstract proposals to the panel conveners Dr. Melike Şahinol (sahinol@oiist.org), Asst. Prof. Dr. Arsev Umur Aydinoglu (arsevu@gmail.com), Asst. Prof. Dr. Harun Kaygan (hkaygan@metu.edu.tr), and Cansu Guner-Birdal (cansu.birdal@tum.de), not longer than 250 words, latest by 15 January 2018. Accepted paper givers will be notified latest by 25 January 2018. After that date, the whole panel application will be submitted to the conference organization team.

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