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New Themes and Advanced Study Groups 2020-2021


In the autumn of 2020, the Pufendorf IAS will welcome eight new groups; five Themes and three Advanced Study Groups. The new Themes will work on current issues concerning: a future for human rights; political polarization online; invasive and alien species; the influence of search engines on our knowledge production and the role of the scientific expert in a post-trust era. The Institute's new Advanced Study Groups will focus on: how actors of a community can identify vulnerable and endangered children, deepen knowledge about the causes of fall accidents and better understand how social and societal structures are reproduced.

Themes 2020-2021

The Theme The Human Aspect of Invasive Alien Plants - the paradox of plants, people and personal preferences, wants to problematize and predict the effects of increased regulation of invasive and alien species in Sweden. Based on value conflicts between different types of actors and how they are handled in relation to regulation, the Theme wishes to, in the long term,  develop tools to facilitate different stakeholders' discussions about invasive and alien species. The group includes researchers from subjects such as biology, ethnology, environmental and climate research, medical ethics, botany, philosophy, plant protection and landscape planning (SLU).

Coordinator: Tina D'Hertefeldt

Based on the fact that we live in a digitized anthropocene age, the Theme The Future of Human Rights aims to understand how factors such as economic globalization, migration, and the development of authoritarian power, interplay in challenging and undermining the development of human rights. Researchers with a background in subjects such as political science, law, sociology, human geography and risk and security with human rights, are included in the group.

Coordinator: Mo Hamza

What is central to the general public in risk communication about radiation safety? Radiation safety expertise is available in various fields, from X-ray to nuclear power. This is perceived in completely different ways and therefore the experts act in a complex information arena. By taking radiation safety experts as a starting point, the Theme EXPERT: The radiation safety expert in a post-trust era wants to explore the scientific expert role in a political and social context. The researchers included in the group come from disciplines such as radiation physics and work environment, nuclear physics, linguistics, environmental and climate research, service management and media and communication.

Coordinator: Christopher Rääf

In the Theme Political Polarization on the Internet: towards an integrated perspective on its causes and effects, researchers from philosophy, law, political science, communication and computer science wishes to develop a conceptual framework for further study of political polarization on the internet.

Coordinator: Anamaria Dutceac Segesten and Erik J Olsson

Within the Theme In Search of Search and its Engines, researchers from library and information sciences, digital cultures, sociology, media and communication, law, philosophy, and mathematics want to examine search engines and their "recommendation system" to understand how they affect our society and prerequisites for media and information literacy.

Coordinator: Olof Sundin and Alison Gerber

Advanced Study Groups 2020

Vulnerable Children - Collaboration to Identify and Manage Risks
(Coordinator: Anna Kristensson Ekwall)

Enhancing health from a life-span perspective -The E-hance perspective
(coordinators: Eva Ekvall Hansson and Sofia Bunke)

Social Reproduction - Making, Sustaining and Transforming Everyday Life
(Coordinators: Catia Gregoratti and Rebecca Selberg)

The groups will work at the institute for eight months starting in September / October. The Pufendorf IAS Board decided on Themes and ASGn on March 19, 2020.