Connaissance de l'Europe médiane

Groupement de recherche n° 3607

Connaissance de l'Europe médiane

Appel à communication: Modernization by the State and its Ecological Consequences in East-Central Europe

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Online Workshop, Centre for Economic and Social History, University of Ostrava, Czechia, 5-6 May 2022

During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries urbanization and industrialization altered the environment in a dramatic fashion throughout Europe. Much of this change in East-Central Europe was instigated, facilitated and coordinated by the state. The economic and technological intervention by the state and its interconnectedness with capitalism and science has had tremendous ecological consequences since the eighteenth century. According to James Scott, one of the most well-known critics of the modern state and its ecological impact, bureaucratic regimes’ aim to organize their societies according to the technocratic principles of “high modernism” has been devastating to the environment. According to Scott, centralized modernization attempts often failed to take local knowledge into account and amplified the forces of homogenization, uniformity, grids, and heroic simplification.

Although there have been substantial studies related to the complex interconnectedness of state-intervention, capitalism and anthropogenic environmental change, the scientific community still knows little about the complexities and environmental aspects of specific modernization attempts in many parts of the world, including East-Central Europe.

To cover this gap the Centre for Economic and Social History at the University of Ostrava invites both established researchers and graduate students to submit their paper proposals to be presented at the online workshop “Modernization by the State and its Ecological Consequences in East-Central Europe” organized online on 5-6 May 2022.

All themes related to the econo-environmental history of modern East-Central Europe are welcome, and the following themes are particularly sought after:

  • Consumption and waste
  • Extractive practices and the environment
  • Industrialization and ecology
  • Urbanization and nature
  • State, capitalism, science and the environment

Submissions should include a 300 words abstract and max. one-page author CV and should be sent by 28 February 2022 to organizers at .


Call for Papers ikona pdf


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