International Seminar 2010

Mobile Constitutions of Society

The 2010 MOVE international seminar is intended for scholars with a strong scientific interest in diverse forms of mobilities and their implications for the study of contemporary society. The aims of these two intensive days are:

  • to build bridges between the ways in which scholars from different social science disciplines are conceptualizing, analyzing and operationalizing the various types of mobilities that populate their research themes
  • to contribute to crafting an interdisciplinary analytical framework for the study of mobilities based on sound ontological, epistemological and methodological premises.

This seminar is motivated by a conviction that the currently burgeoning literature on contemporary mobilities, while offering promising perspectives, does not yet provide a fully satisfying conceptualization of mobilities and of their mutually-constitutive relationships with and within society. Through the papers and conversations in this seminar and ensuing publications, we expect to make a substantial contribution by fostering debates and further research on these issues. Within this perspective, the seminar will conclude with a session dedicated to planning an edited volume reflecting the seminar proceedings and suggestions for follow-up research activities for the seminar participants and future scholars.

Venue information

7th and 8th June 2010, University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland

We were able to add an extra day on methods of mobilities studies!

Call for Papers

Paper submissions are invited for one of the following panels:

Panel 1: The mobility of people and its impact on the nation-state and its regulatory arrangements. Papers shall explore the processes by which the transnational practices of migrants, their ties and forms of belonging (e.g. transnational mobilization, flexible citizenship) challenge the regulatory mechanisms of their states of origin and settlement policies.

Panel chair: Hans-Rudolf Wicker

Panel 2: The mobility of models of built forms. How is urban globalization related to, and shaped by, mobile ideas and practices of spatial and physical design and planning? Papers will analyze the production, global circulation and local reception of blueprints for the design of built forms claiming universal applicability.

Panel chair: Ola Söderström

Panel 3: The mobility of norms and forms of bioscientific knowledge, health care policies, medical technologies, and medical and patient practices. Papers should consider transnational exchanges in the medical care of bodies across geographic and cultural borders. Panellists will explore how global movements of biomedicine/molecular science, population health policies, reproductive technologies, and body parts are reshaping public vs. private medical care and state/civil society relations.

Panel chair: Shalini Randeria

Panel 4: The mobility of models and institutions of higher education. Papers will examine the transnationalization of academic and educational institutions, and its effects on host societies’ subjects and policies. The aim is to shed light on the reconfiguration and reconstitution of systems of higher education under contemporary globalization.

Panel Chair: Francesco Panese

Panel 5: The mobility of actors within built environments. Papers are expected to consider the transforming effects of rapid globalization on the relationship between built environments and people’s daily mobility. Of particular interest is people’s ability to craft creative mobility strategies in order to negotiate and adapt to particular social, political, and economic contexts.

Panel chair: Vincent Kaufmann

Panel 6: While increased levels of globalization are characterized by increased mobility, such mobility has led to all sort of tensions in receiving societies. Reactions and resistances to movements of people, goods, ideas and practices are thus being observed. This panel addresses various instances of opposition to, and mobilization against, mobilities across time and space.

Panel chair: Gianni D’Amato

General Guidelines for Abstracts

Abstracts of at least 400 words and a maximum of 700 must be sent as attachments in either Word or PDF format to

Please include author(s) names, institutional affiliation, contact and name of presenter, and an indication of the panel to which the paper is submitted.

This seminar is expected to yield significant results in terms of prospects for publications as well as further scientific collaboration. There will therefore be a limited number of papers selected for presentation in each session. To help us assess the suitability of each proposal, abstracts should include

  • a clear outline of the main empirical and theoretical questions addressed by the paper
  • a statement of the methods and support arguments
  • three key references

Submission deadline: Monday, 1st March 2010. The call is now closed.


If you are interested in participating, we ask to send us a short e-mail by 2 June 2010 to indicate your interest, and which days (Sunday, Monday, Tuesday) you plan to attend, so that we can anticipate demand. Registration and participation is free.