Nina Blom Andersen
Dear Members, Colleagues and Followers of the Disaster, Conflict and Social Crisis Research Network,
I am glad to be able to present to you this 54th DCSCRN Newsletter. With this first issue of the year, on behalf of the DCSCRN Coordinating Committee, I would like to wish you all the best in 2015.
Following the sad news about the bereavement of Ulrich Beck, a member of the DCSCRN Advisory Board Murat Balamir wrote an obituary to be found in this issue on p. 23. Besides this, a large extent of the issue is characterized by briefings on conference activities, since we will provide you with reports from the completed research network midterm conference (p. 4) and the ESA conference to come in 2015 (call for papers on p. 25). Please note that the deadline for the ESA conference has been extended – you may submit your abstracts until 15 February 2015.
We have also gathered a number of extended abstracts from the Interim’14 conference in Crete last September (please see p. 7). Reading them gives an opportunity to explore the variety in the subjects dealt with in this biannual midterm conference: including disaster planning, engagement in local communities, social movements, and the impact of social crisis on people’s living conditions. Our midterm conferences have an intimate character: A confined number of participants gives the possibility to pursue good discussions in the two day period of the gathering, just as well as giving us the time to socialize, catch up with old friends, and meet new ones.
The ESA conference that will be held in Prague in August 2015 has some ways a totally different character: Thousands of sociologists and scholars from related research fields are gathered on a large university area, numerous activities are going at the same time, and the comparison to an anthill is not an exaggeration. Some are inspired to mingle and visit sessions and plenaries across research networks being inspired by titles of sessions or abstracts, where others are not that engaged in the centrally organized activities but meet to keep up with their network and arrange meetings for other purposes. And again some participants stick to the same research network through the days. All very fine reasons!
The overall title of the ESA conference is Differences, Inequalities and Sociological Imagination, which we in the DCSCRN believe is identical with many of our activities. But let’s also acknowledge that ESA have chosen to put sociological imagination as one of the scopes, since I believe that we sometimes tend to forget this objective in our work. I hope to see the sociological imagination flourish in Prague!
As coordinator of the DCSCRN I hope to meet many of you in Prague – one way or the other. The call for the conference is out. Read about the eight specific sessions which have been defined by members of the DCSCRN on p. 25, whom the Coordinating Committee of the DCSCRN would like to thank for their commitment. But do remember that in case these specific calls do not match the research project that you would like to present, we do have a number of open sessions as well.
I wish you a pleasant reading,
Nina Blom Andersen