Call for Submissions – Conference Section: Securing the Atmospheric

The 9th Pan-European Conference on International Relations: The Worlds of Violence invites contributions that can speak to the ontological, interdisciplinary, political, and epistemic dimensions and implications of research on violence. Its academic program will be organized in the format of sections composed of presentations and discussions.

The conference program chairs invite paper, panel, and roundtable proposals for submission to the section entitled Securing the Atmospheric: On Shifting, Melting, Rising, and Geo-Engineered Boundaries, chaired by Lukas Pauer (Vertical Geopolitics Lab):

Spatial practice has become central to the geopolitics of claiming sovereignty through establishing a territorial footprint. As entire nations are confined and defined by precise natural borders, peaks, glacial ridges, shorelines, sand depositions, and the meeting of air and sea have been marked, altered, and colonized by systems of control that played a fundamental role in the definition of the modern sovereign state. Where geographic or atmospheric processes are the basis for a shifting definition of territory, climate change and contested resource claims will have a very literal effect on the size and shape of nations. New concepts of movable borders have thus been introduced into national legislation, recognizing the volatility of any material geography through regular alterations of the physical benchmarks that determine the exact frontier. In these cases, the relationship between representation, survey, cartography, and geography is especially relevant in the context of borders, which are not permanently determined but actually shift back and forth. Where and when do representational methods coincide with physical realities? How can we position ourselves as mediator between the representational and the material means? If security has to contend with volume, how does thinking about the atmospheric instead of surfaces, three dimensions instead of territories change how we think about the geopolitics of space? As territories are bordered, divided and demarcated, but not understood in terms of their altitudinal dimension, this section aims to investigate how borders can become complex systems in evolution, whose physical manifestations coincide with the terms of their representation.

Fig. Hilton Giardini Naxos Convention center in Giardini Naxos, Italy

The section welcomes both individual paper proposals as well as panel and roundtable proposals. Each 105-minute discussion should comprise five presenters plus a discussant who will also act as discussion chair. Starting Dec8 2014, max. 200-word proposal abstracts must be submitted via the online submission system. The closing date for proposals is Jan15, 2015. For further information on the section and its convener, as well as general information on the conference, please visit the conference website. Please contact the section chair for any question regarding the section.