Postgraduate workshop


This is a pre-conference workshop for MA and PhD students and other early-career researchers to share ideas, experiences, and enthusiasm around how we do (post-)graduate STS studies “by other means.” This is an informal workshop for sharing ideas, not a venue for individual presentations. We ask for no special background or experience in alternative/open-access publishing, cooperative research practices, or careers outside academia, only an interest in discussing these topics.

Participants will hear from cooperators in Barcelona’s activist scene, other students and former students about strategies for alternative and open-access publishing, cooperative research processes, and careers outside academia. Discuss your own experiences, ideas, and concerns. Network with an international mix of colleagues. Share refreshments and get to know Barcelona a bit better.

We have tried to accommodate all completed applications; however, due to venue limitations we are limited to about 50 participants. Completed applications have been accepted in A) the order received, and B) the interest of including participants of diverse geographic locations, genders, and academic positions.

Schedule and program

8:30 – Meet at the corner of La Rambla de Poble and the Carrer de Pujades. There will be opportunities to get coffee and a pastry and meet other participants while waiting for everyone to arrive. The Poble Nou metro station is two blocks away and circled on the accompanying map.

9:05Walking tour beginning at the Route La Rambla

From our meeting place, our guide will talk and walk us through historical sites associated with communist positivism and the dream of “utopian distribution,” a factory important to the history of Franquism and the origins of the Poblenou district, a quarantine hospital, cooperative houses important in the associacionist movement, and the Forum and its significance for neighborhood gentrification. We’ll end at Hangar, a former factory-turned community art and coworking space and our home for the rest of the day’s discussion.

10:15 – Arrive at Hangar, where we’ll conduct the bulk of the workshop

10:30-11:45Session 1: Research by other means

Research discussants: Isaac Marrero, Christopher Wood, Gili Yaron, Adolfo Estalella, Tania Perez-Bustos, Aaro Mikael, Tamar Novick, Manuel Tironi

STS is about opening into diverse and intriguing research practices. Our research is often performed to explicitly concern the accounts of participants other than the researcher via ethnography, increasingly broadly conceived. The rise of “big data” and DIY biology, for example, challenge how we define what it means to do research. STS researchers adopt roles in art, architecture, and design to explore new perspectives on dwelling in enacted worlds. In this session, we invite discussion about the practicalities of research in spaces outside conventional academic borders, and about their broader theoretical implications for the delicate relationships between researchers and the research(ed) worlds they assemble.

11:45 – 12:05 – Coffee break

12:05 – 13:35Session 2: Publishing by other means

Publishing discussants: Ignacio Farias, Endre Dányi, Michaela Spencer, Sampsa Hyssalo, Erika Szymanski

Recent years have witnessed a movement toward innovative, increasingly open and democratic publishing practices beyond the conventional peer-reviewed paper: open-access journals, research blogs, multi-modal theses, open data sets, and other forms of “sharing the word.” Academic careers, in counter-motion, are ever-more dependent on publication records, largely still weighted in favor of conventional publishing outlets. PhD students, by extension, are being expected to publish faster than the learning process perhaps allows, and with peer-reviewed publication the default option for “making our work public.” In light of these motions, we invite positive (even cheerful) conversation about new possibilities and paradigms being opened up for students and the impact of these openings on our work. In this session, we hope to invite sharing of experiences, challenges, and ways forward in broadly sharing our work.

13:35 – 15:00 – Lunch

15:00 – 16:30Session 3: Careers by other means

Careers discussants: Tahani Nadim, Maxigas, Mireia Faucha, Kat Braybrooke, Eleanor Hadley KershawArno Simons

The PhD operates as preparation for an academic career, but only a minority of today’s graduating PhDs immediately begin, let alone indefinitely remain in academia. And even many graduating PhDs who enter academia seek involvements outside it. How do we use the academic knowledge and skills in which we’ve been trained outside of academia? How do we build on an STS background to work with, or as non-academic professionals? How does STS in particular translate to work in activism, business, policy, or art? In this session, we invite discussants who work in these fields — with or without an accompanying academic career — to talk about their experiences, challenges, and joys.

16:30 – 17:15 – Take a break, or continue conversations over a beer at La Escocesa

17:15 – 17:30 – Walk to the CCIB for the conference opening plenary beginning at 18:00

Special Activities