Making Europe through infrastructures of (in)security
12-13 November 2020, University of Vienna
Prof. Claudia Aradau (King´s College London)
Prof. Annalisa Pelizza (University of Bologna)
Prof. Johan Schot (University of Utrecht)
Organizers: Nina Klimburg-Witjes, Paul Trauttmansdorff, Pouya Sepehr (Dep. of Science and Technology Studies) Katharina T. Paul, Christian Haddad (Dep. of Political Science), Philipp Knopp (Dep. of Sociology)
Call for Abstracts
With this interdisciplinary workshop, we aim to extend a longstanding concern with the processes and practices of infrastructuring in STS, sociology, political science, and other fields, to emergent forms of surveillance and securitization in Europe. Furthermore, the workshop is inspired by the need to investigate how different arrangements of infrastructures and practices of in/security participate in the making of “Europe” (Aradau, 2010; Pelizza, 2019).
Infrastructures have always been crucial objects of political promises, desirable futures, and collective imagination, and they have been instrumental for (re)configuring political practices and social values, for in/excluding certain groups of users or enacting populations (Grommé & Ruppert, 2019). Currently, we witness a return to infrastructures in the context of European policies and discourses of in/security. Examples include the so-called “Security Union” proposing technological interconnectivity and interoperability as solutions to contemporary threats, concerns with cyber in/security, infrastructural practices to govern borders and migrations, or projects around “smart cities”. In the most recent moment of infrastructural politics, the COVID-19 crisis has exposed contestations in manifold ways in which different countries in Europe and beyond are responding to in/security in relation to health diplomacy.
The workshop will bring these various threads together and collect papers that address the ways in which infrastructures of in/security are designed, envisioned and assembled, and how these infrastructuring practices co-construct “Europe” (Pelizza, 2019; Schipper & Schot, 2011).
We invite both conceptual and empirical contributions that address, but are not limited to, the following themes:
- Practices of (de)securitization of European infrastructures (e.g. of health, borders, space and defense, surveillance);
- Promises and perils of futures of in/security that are imagined and enacted in the making of “Europe”;
- Processes and practices of infrastructuring in the construction of European statehood;
- Politics of in/visibility of in/security infrastructures
Deadline: July 15, 2020.
This workshop is jointly funded by the faculty of social sciences of the University of Vienna within the framework of its interdisciplinary program “Knowledge, Materiality, and Public Spaces” and the Horizon 2020 project InsSciDE (grant agreement no 770523), 2018-2021
Travelling and accommodation expenses can be provided to a limited number of participants. Please contact the conveners of the workshop in case you need funding.
As organizers we are aware that in current COVID-19 circumstances, the planning of events and travel arrangements is uncertain and difficult. However, maintaining a positive spirit, we intend to hold the workshop in November in Vienna, while continuously evaluating the situation and keeping alternative scenarios in mind, such as postponement or a virtual workshop.
Aradau, C. (2010). Security that matters: Critical infrastructure and objects of protection. Security Dialogue, 41(5), 491–514. https://doi.org/10.1177/0967010610382687
Grommé, F., & Ruppert, E. (2019). Population Geometries of Europe: The Topologies of Data Cubes and Grids. Science Technology and Human Values, 1–27. https://doi.org/10.1177/0162243919835302
Pelizza, A. (2019). Processing Alterity, Enacting Europe: Migrant Registration and Identification as Co-construction of Individuals and Polities. Science Technology and Human Values, 1–27. https://doi.org/10.1177/0162243919827927
Schipper, F., & Schot, J. (2011). Infrastructural Europeanism, or the project of building Europe on infrastructures: An introduction. History and Technology, 27(3), 245–264. https://doi.org/10.1080/07341512.2011.604166