The International Sociological Association (ISA) invites applications from PhD students in sociology or interdisciplinary programs (with a strong sociology component) to attend the Thirteenth ISA International Laboratory for PhD Students in Sociology to be organised jointly by the ISA and the South Asian Studies Programme, Department of Sociology, National University of Singapore, Singapore, 20-25 July, 2015. It will be coordinated by Professor Vineeta Sinha, ISA Vice-President for Publications.
The theme of this year’s ISA Laboratory is Sociology in Troubled Times. Sociology and moments of displacement are far from strange bedfellows. Indeed the discipline’s very existence and identity have been traced to the ‘great transformation’ of European industrial societies in the coming of Western modernity. Since its inception, practitioners have regularly noted as well as theorized the different moments of crisis facing the discipline. Presently, the discipline of Sociology faces a number of challenges as enduring and apparently unwavering socio-economic and political formations are unsettled globally.
These instabilities and shifts demand that sociologists engage with lived, material, and often, unjust realities and offer meaningful responses. Rather than view states of uncertainty, confusion and disturbance heralded by periods of turmoil negatively, it would be more productive to view these affirmatively as a catalyst or harbinger of change. No doubt dramatic changes produce disquiet, tumult and agitation but these scenarios have the transformative potential to question status quo, push given boundaries and create novel possibilities. We invite the next generation of sociologists to take up these challenges and contemplate new configurations in the production of sociological knowledge, with a rekindled Sociological Imagination.
Sociology in Troubled Times will be the focus of a series of lectures during the Laboratory week, and these lectures will be delivered by leading sociologists from Singapore and internationally. The core of the programme will remain, however, the presentations by the students of their own work and subsequent discussion by the group of participants. The theme has been conceived in broad terms, and students’ research may focus on or be related in a variety of ways to one or more of its emphases and concerns.
The working language of the workshop will be English. Participants in the workshop should be able to understand and speak English very well. The students who apply must be at an advanced stage of their doctoral studies; they should have made some progress with the collection of data and have commenced with writing their dissertations. The Laboratory is meant to contribute to the quality of research project and the final thesis and thus nearly completed PhD are not eligible to participate.
Because of space limitations, participants in any previous ISA Laboratory for doctoral students should abstain from applying.
Each interested candidate is requested to submit the following documentation in a 'pdf' format:
- An application letter (in English) specifying the topic of her/his research and the expected date of degree completion.
- A two-page curriculum vitae (in English).
- A two-page abstract (maximum 1,000 words) of the applicant’s research project (in English), including information about the main theoretical approach(es) and the main methodological approach(es) that are used in the research
- Two letters of recommendation (in English, French or Spanish):
(a) one from the student’s dissertation adviser or a dissertation committee member that comments on the research project (including the stage of the research), theoretical and methodological approach(es) as well as the anticipated date of completion, and
(b) the other from the Department Chair or another professor that can comment about the applicant’s academic merits (in comparison with other students in the same programme) and about the candidate’s potential leadership in the social sciences.
The email addresses of both referees should be included in the student’s letter of application.
Applications and the requested documentation must be sent in a 'pdf' format file by e-mail to International Sociological Association at firstname.lastname@example.org not later than 15 January 2015.
Late applications will only be considered if places remain available.
Selection criteria include: excellence of research, diversity of theoretical approaches, gender and geographic diversity of the candidates. Selection results will be announced by early April 2015.
Travel and lodging expenses (including meals at the Laboratory) of the participants will be covered by South Asian Studies Programme, Department of Sociology, National University of Singapore and the International Sociological Association.