Ninth International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Sciences

The International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Sciences is an international, interdisciplinary event that examines the nature of disciplinary practices, and the interdisciplinary practices that arise in the context of ‘real world’ applications. It also interrogates what constitutes ‘science’ in a social context, and the connections between the social and other sciences. The focus of presentations range from the finely grained and empirical, to wide-ranging multi-disciplinary and transdisciplinary practices, to perspectives on knowledge and method.

The 2013 conference, held in Prague, Czech Republic, saw over 250 delegates representing over 45 countries.

We are inviting proposals for paper presentations, workshops/interactive sessions, posters/exhibits, or colloquia addressing Interdisciplinary Social Sciences through one of the following themes:
* Social and Community Studies
* Civic and Political Studies
* Cultural Studies
* Global...

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International Conference on Design Principles and Practices

Design is our collective intelligence. It shapes the world we live in. We can recognize design in the materiality of our objects, the environments we dwell in, and the visual communication that we share. Design is the common ground of everyday life, and becomes the layer connecting the way we perceive our world, cultures and societies.

The conference will try to address the following questions with an interdisciplinary approach, through keynote speakers, workshops, and parallel sessions:

How does design contribute to the future of our societies?
What tools and approaches can we develop to share creativity and design?
What projects and creative solutions are designers producing for our collective future?
What is the relationship between individual action and collective sharing in design?
What is the relationship between ecological knowledge and cultural adaptation?

The International Conference on Design Principles and Practices, held in...

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SSH News: Debating Open Access, more Heart of the Matter responses, CHA call for papers, and MusCan


Christine McKenna Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

The British Academy for the Humanities and Social Sciences recently published a collection of essays addressing the future of scholarly open access practices, which consider their implications for the social sciences and humanities fields and suggest a more nuanced approach to open access policy. The collection, entitled Debating Open Access, is (obviously) available for free, and can be accessed here

The debate about social sciences and humanities education in the United States still...

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SSH News: “The Heart of the Matter”, Canadian Studies, & Impressions of Congress 2013

Christine McKenna, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

The American Academy of Arts & Sciences released a report this week entitled “The Heart of the Matter”, which examines the value of social sciences and humanities (SSH) in the pursuit of a strengthened economy and cohesive society. The report makes recommendations for improving American SSH education, and suggests that in combination with STEM disciplines (the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics), a liberal arts education could promote innovation and improve understanding of the contexts in which science-based research is applied. An article in the ...

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Research in practice: Students share their research at the Internship Showcase

Andrina Fawcett

Tuesday afternoon students showcased some of the amazing scholarship they have been producing in relationship with the community at the Congress 2013 Expo Space.

Gaming to gain problem solving skills

Teacher and Educational Psychology PhD student Andrew Sung looked at executive function training in children with autism and spectrum disorder.

Challenges with executive functioning result in problem solving, attention, and working memory difficulties in autistic children. However, as Andrew explained, “if you can improve an autistic child's attention and problem solving skills then that can lead to better school readiness and perhaps better social communication.”  With...

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A specter of Canada’s literary past: Tweeting the @Wilfred_Watson Archive

Andrina Fawcett

Nicholas van Orden, Paul Hjartarson and Harvey Quamen’s aptly named “I Tweet Dead People” was presented in partnership with EMiC as part of a larger panel this morning for the Canadian Society for Digital Humanities.

The project, which began primarily as a marketing tool, seeks to highlight scholarship that is being produced in relation to the Wilfred Watson Archive. As Nick van Orden put it, “we wanted to make previously unpublished material accessible to the public”. Wilfred Watson, Canadian author and playwright, was born in early 20th century England, and later relocated to Canada. Obtaining his B.A in English as a mature student, he continued his scholarship and won the Governor General’...

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Medieval Medley: Painting and Sculpture at the CSM Meeting

Randip Bakshi

The panelists setting up as the session chair looks on. (Featured: John Osborne, Erica Dodd, and Lesley Jessop)

Monday afternoon's session on Painting and Sculpture noted John Osborne, President of the Canadian Society of Medievalists, was a "truly UVic panel" as all of the presenters were affilaited with the University of Victoria. Now this in itself is a compelling point when it comes to medieval art historical scholarship in Canada but we'll get to that momentarily. The panel's three presenters are trained art historians and include Lesley Jessop, Sessional Instructor at the Department of History in Art, Joseph Polzer, Associate Fellow at the Centre for Studies in Religion and...

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Short and sweet – finalist Storytellers present SSHRC funded research projects in 3 minutes or less

Andrina Fawcett

From left to right: Kirk Luther, Manon Jolicœur, Cheryl Heykoop, Steve Wilcox, Janine Stockford, SSHRC President Chad Gaffield

The Congress 2013 Expo space was buzzing early Monday afternoon as the 25 Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Research for a Better Life: The Storytellers finalists prepared for their presentations. In a pre-performance pep talk, SSHRC president Chad Gaffield confided in the finalists, “it was extremely stiff competition to get here, so you should all be extremely proud of yourselves.”

This is the first year that The Storytellers project has been presented at Congress...

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"Why do I keep coming to Congress?"

This week will be Patricia Roy’s 46th year attending the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Her speech at our media kick-off event on Friday – which included remarks from UVic president David Turpin, Federation president Antonia Maioni, Academic Convenor Andrew Rippin, and Congress Chair Catherine Mateer – offers a wonderful glimpse into the opportunities and excitement surrounding Congress that have continued to grow over the years:

I hasten to point out that I was a fairly young student when I attended my first Congress, or as it was then known, the Learneds. I have attended almost every year since. In 1965, the meetings were much smaller. To cite an example, the Canadian Historical Association, one of the larger groups at the Congress, then only had two or three simultaneous sessions....

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Storytellers @ Congress

Christine McKenna Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

“The social sciences and humanities touch every facet of our lives,” says Ursula Gobel, Director of Communications for the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). That is why research in these fields is so important – and why spreading the word about research is a positive step toward affecting change in society. To demonstrate how social sciences and humanities research is impacting our lives, SSHRC created Research for a Better Life: The Storytellers, a competition aimed at promoting some of the valuable research going on at post-secondary institutions across Canada.

Launched this year in January, the inaugural contest invited students from across the country to submit a digital presentation describing a SSHRC-funded research project, whether conducted by the...

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