Call for Papers 4S 2019 – Knowing Democracy Panel

Please consider proposing a paper for the below panel at the 4S 2019 Conference. If you would circulate to relevant colleagues that would also be much appreciated. Please notice the deadline is February 1st and the conference takes place 4-7 September 2019 in New Orleans. More info about the 4S conference can be found here.

87. Knowing Democracy

Andreas Birkbak, Aalborg University Copenhagen

Mark Brown, California State University, Sacramento

Jan-Peter Voss, Berlin University of Technology

Volkan Sayman, Berlin University of Technology

Brice Laurent, Centre de sociologie de l’innovation, Mines ParisTech

What does STS have to contribute to studies of democracy? What does it have to contribute to public engagements with democracy? Our suggestion is that STS can innovate, interrupt and regenerate the knowing and doing of democracy by bringing into view the practices through which democracy becomes known in one way or another. A key interest is with the generation of epistemic authority on what democracy is and how it works, and with how experts of democracy configure the practical knowing and actual doing of democracy in certain ways: by shaping discourses, subjectivities and material arrangements. We thus invite papers that mobilize concepts and methods from STS to investigate how knowledge is produced on what democracy is and how it works. This may include ‘scientific’ engagements with democracy such as political philosophy and theories of democracy, empirical research on democratic arrangements and processes, performance evaluations, as well as the development of ‘technologies’ such as electoral and voting systems, polling methods, participatory procedures, digital devices, campaigning and protest strategies, education materials, curricula and skills training courses. Underlying this endeavor is a concern for the performativity of producing knowledge on democracy, the ontological politics that are involved, and the ways in which they are explicitly reflected and open for public engagement.