CFP: the 4th Social Boudaries of Work Conference

Work, knowledge and power in contemporary capitalism

25-26 October 2018, Gdańsk, Poland

We would like to invite you to take part in the fourth edition of international scientific conference ‘Social boundaries of work’, entitled ‘Work, knowledge and power in contemporary capitalism’, which will take place on October 25 th 26th, 2018 in Gdansk. The event is organized by The Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Gdańsk, Institute of Philosophy, Sociology and Journalism, and the Sociology of Work Section of the Polish Sociological Association the initiator and the main organizer running the three previous editions of the conference http://www.socialboundariesofwork.lh.pl/en/previous editions/

The concept of ‘Social Boundaries of Work’ conference was initiated in 2014 and has obtained international acknowledgement. Conference is based on a continuous discussion on the meaning and social boundaries of human work. It aims at expanding field of theoretical and practical reflection on the importance of work in the context of local, national and global changes in the economic, political, social and cultural dimensions. The conference’s goal is multi paradigm debate that takes into account multiple theoretical traditions and a wide spectrum of methodologically diverse empirical research.

The fourth edition of the conference will focus on the issues of power and knowledge, as well as their embedding in the problems of work. In particular, we will be interested in those aspects of labour relations that take place in the context of broadly defined debates over the modern knowledge based economy. The questions we want to ask include, among others:

  • What is the role of knowledge in economic and social processes in the workplace?
  • What types of knowledge play a key role in labour process?
  • How does the work that produces and operates knowledge work?
  • Is the division between mental and manual work correct and valid?
  • What rules runs knowledge – understood as an economic resource – in informal structures of work taking place outside market relations?
  • Whether and to what extent knowledge is an autonomous source of new economic and social value?
  • What are the relationships between traditionally understood employment and other activities such as prosumption, activity of producers or information distributors (e.g. in p2p networks)?
  • Can knowledge become an object of ownership only as a result of Intellectual Property Rights?
  • What is the relationship between knowledge and authority in the context of labour processes?
  • How does the relations of power on the line of the owner – wage worker shape in the new constellations?
  • Do the new ways of providing and organizing work blur the boundary between work and leisure? If so, how?
  • What is the role of destandarization of time and place of work in labour relations?
  • What role do automatons and machines play in modern labour relations (e.g. in the context of what Germans call Industry 4.0)?
  • How does the digital economy affect class related, gender and racial relationships?
  • What is the future of labour processes, power relations and working time?

We will focus therefore on the knowledge based work, generating knowledge and operating knowledge entangled in different contexts of relations of domination and power. The issues discussed in this way allow to go beyond the perspective of the highly industrialized countries, and beyond the point of view of officially employed and paid employees.

The conference language is primarily English. Selected panels may take place in Polish, but we prefer a debate in a language that will be understandable for many foreign guests.


The conference: 25-26 October 2018

The deadline for sending abstracts: May 1st 2018

Classification of abstracts / information about acceptance: 30 June 2018

The deadline for paying the conference fee: August 1st 2018

For more details go to: http://www.socialboundariesofwork.lh.pl/en/ 



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