European Sociological Association Conference, Murcia, Spain Sept 23-26 2003


The SSTNET call for papers has been extended to cover in addition to our original focus (see further below) a topic that is related to the general theme of the ESA conference. We invite submissions on

New Technologies in Ageing Societies

New complex technologies which are often science based can be extremely helpful in the everyday life of elder people. These people on the other hand often seem to lack the skills to use new technologies adequately. Both views, however, may be misleading. Papers are invited which discuss the matches and mismatches of the skills of elder people and the capabilities of new technologies.
Please find the rules concerning paper proposals below.

Governing Science and Technology (S&T) in the Era of Globalization

Science has traditionally been regarded as a global collective good. Also technology or more specifically technical knowledge is often shared by technical experts in different countries. Thus, globalization is no completely new phenomenon in science and technology (S&T) and from a functional perspective S&T have been drivers of globalization. But if we look at the organizational forms and the institutional entrenchment of knowledge production S&T are still rooted to a considerable degree in national systems. This national embeddedness of knowledge production is severely affected by globalization.
Increasing international interconnectedness and interdependency as well as cross-border trading and networking, a diminishing significance of distance, and the emergence of international organizations and international regimes - they all indicate an historical process of transformation of societies including science and technology. Most apparent is this process in Europe where national governments have transferred authority to the Commission and the Council of the European Union and East European countries are ready to access the EU. The globalization process provides opportunities and constraints regarding the promotion, coordination and regulation of S&T, and it shifts the balance of power between national and supranational as well as public and private actors towards multi-level hybrid constellations. Currently this process is predominantly guided by the imperatives of economic rent-seeking which have triggered a pressure towards commercialization and commodification of knowledge.
As a result the institutions and organizations of knowledge production, appropriation and diffusion have changed. But globalization has also impacted on the process of knowledge generation and on patterns of cooperation and specialization. It appears to have been reinforced by the widespread use of information and communication technology and particularly by the Internet whose reach has extended into many diverse scientific and engineering communities.

To the stream of sessions of SSTNET we invite papers which focus on:

Europeanization and globalization of S&T - goals and functions of institutions and organizations
Patterns and problems of cross-border individual and organizational collaboration in S&T
Global (virtual) scientific and professional "communities" and their institutional and normative basis - the value dimension of globalization
Integration and fragmentation of globalized S&T - the structural dimension
Trans-national political regulation and self-regulation in S&T - legitimacy and efficacy
National strategies in innovation competition, intellectual property protection and risk regulation in S&T

Theoretical and empirical studies including case studies are welcome.


Paper proposals (abstracts)

According to the rules of the ESA, title and abstract of the proposed papers must not exceed 250 words. Please send your abstract to Raymund Werle ( by February 28, 2003. The notification of acceptance/rejection of abstracts will be made by the conveners by April 15, 2003. Complete papers should be made available by Sept. 8, 2003.


Conveners of the SSTNET sessions are:

Raymund Werle: Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, Paulstr. 3, 50676 Köln, Germany, Tel: ++49 221 2767224; Fax:++49 221 2767452
Marja Häyrinen Alestalo: Dept. of Sociology, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 18, 00014 Helsinki, Finland, Tel. ++358-9-191 23964; Fax. ++358-9-191 23967
Luisa Oliveira: DINÂMIA / ISCTE, Av. Forças Armadas, 1600 Lisboa, Portugal
Tel. ++351 21 7938638, Fax ++351 21 7940042
Maarten Mentzel: 38 Johan de Wittstraat, 2334 AR Leiden, The Netherlands
Tel: ++31-71-5172570
For general information regarding the conference please visit regularly the ESA web site at:

More about SSTNET at: