Call for abstracts: Workshop on the "Empire and Capitalism" project

We invite scholars and researchers to contribute to a research workshop retreat exploring the imperial continuities within the North Sea's extractive activities.

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Oljeplattform i Nordsj√łen

We especially welcome early-career scholars as well as scholars from various disciplines, including but not limited to political sciences, geography, and the arts and humanities.  

Successful applicants will be invited to a two-day workshop (lunch to lunch) retreat in the Stavanger region, Norway from May 14-15, 2024. The aspired output of this workshop will be an edited volume or special issue outlining a new comprehensive research agenda that examines empire and capitalism in the North Sea. We will also explore options for grants for future research projects.

The workshop will have a maximum of 12-15 attendees. A limited number of travel grants will be provided to accepted workshop participants without institutional funding. Please indicate if you have access to other travel funding. Online participation will be considered if necessary.

Examples of Research Topics (Other relevant topics will also be considered):

  • Decolonization and the Shaping of the North Sea examines the geopolitical context leading to the North Sea's emergence as an energy frontier, exploring the impact of decolonization in the Global South and its influence on North Sea development.
  • Colonial Capital, Knowledge, and Technologies investigates the indispensable role played by companies like Royal Dutch Shell and BP, whose capital, competences, and operational expertise honed in the colonies, were pivotal in North Sea exploitation.
  • Oil Workers as Brokers of Empire reevaluates the portrayal of early North Sea oil workers as pioneers and explore their role as brokers of empire, mapping and surveying the territory to enable extraction.
  • Imperial Infrastructures in the North Sea examines North Sea oil and gas infrastructures through the lens of imperial logics and practices, offering new insights into the region as imperial space for resource extraction.
  • The Green Transition and Settler Colonialism explores cases such as Energy Islands in the North Sea, analysing how significant geo-engineering projects signify a new phase of extractive activities amid the global push for a green transition.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Submit detailed abstract (maximum 500 words) outlining research contributions, theoretical frameworks, methodologies, and anticipated insights.  Also attach a short bio (maximum 250 words).
  • Deadline for abstract submission: February 16, 2024. Selected applicants will be notified by March 1, 2024.
  • Submit to

If your abstract is accepted, you will be expected to submit a draft paper of 4-5000 words no later than May 1, 2024, in preparation for the workshop.