2015 Interdisciplinary Seed Grants

The following recipients were awarded funding to support their proposals for research, events, conferences, and workshops on interdisciplinary topics in Science and Society for the 2015-2016 academic year.

Also see: 2018 Seed Grants2017 Seed Grants, 2016 Seed Grants

TITLE: Beyond Circulation: Non-Western Universalisms and Global Histories of Science
RECIPIENTS: John Chen, Graduate Student, Department of History
Angela Giordani, Graduate Student, Department of History
DESCRIPTION: — This grant will support a graduate conference at Columbia in spring 2016 with the aim of encouraging greater dialogue between postcolonial and circulationist approaches to the history of science and knowledge transformation.

— Such an event would reflect and synthesize important recent trends in fields including history of science, intellectual history, and Middle Eastern, East Asian, South Asian, African, and Eurasian studies, as well as international and global history.

— The event will be held as a standard one-day conference format, with panelists representing different disciplines along with varied periods, places, and methods of study. Results of the meeting will be encapsulated in a special issue of Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.

TITLE: Expertise from Margin to Center: Science, Politics, and Democracy — A Graduate Student Conference
RECIPIENTS: Luciana de Souza Leão, Graduate Student, Department of Sociology
Moran Levy, Graduate Student, Department of Sociology
Joan Robinson, Graduate Student, Department of Sociology
DESCRIPTION: — Building on Columbia’s current and historical strength in the Social Studies of Science,  this grant will support a two-day Graduate Student Conference titled, “Expertise from Margin to Center: Science, Politics, and Democracy” in February 2016.

— Presenters will be graduate students, while faculty members (Faculty advisors Gil Eyal and Alondra Nelson) will serve as moderators, discussants, and keynote speakers. The conference will be open to graduate students and aims to strengthen Science and Technology Studies scholarship by promoting research and network building among early career scholars.

— Following the conference we aim to produce a special journal issue or an edited volume based on a selection of the conference papers.

TITLE: Science, Technology, and Religion in America Reading Group
RECIPIENTS: Cara Rock-Singer, Graduate Student, Department of Religion
Joseph Fisher, Graduate Student, Department of Religion
DESCRIPTION: — This grant will support an interdisciplinary reading group on the intersection of science, technology, and religion in America. It will draw students from multiple departments at Columbia as well as from other graduate schools in the New York area.

— The funding will be used to provide a space for graduate students to read and discuss central texts in the field, workshop dissertation chapters, and articles, and bring a speaker each semester who is a scholar working at the intersection of Science and Technology Studies (STS) and Religion.

TITLE: Pedagogy in Environmental Humanities
RECIPIENTS: Frankie Pavia, Graduate Student, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Jason Bell, Graduate Student, Department of English Language and Literature, Yale University
DESCRIPTION: — This grant will support a colloquium at Columbia University designed to facilitate dialogue among educators in the greater New York City area about teaching at the crossroads of environmental science and humanistic inquiry.

— The group will prepare a workbook of syllabi and host a symposium at the end of the 2015/2016 academic year to share research and experiences about instruction in this new interdisciplinary field.

TITLE: Imperial Ecologies Workshop
RECIPIENTS: Casey Primel, Graduate Student, Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies
DESCRIPTION: — This grant will support a workshop with an objective of initiating a dialogue between emerging scholarship on the environmental and economic history of regions with the fields of critical geography, intellectual history, and science and technology studies. Select geographic regions will include the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, Latin America, and Europe.

— The workshop seeks something more fundamental than a remapping of regions – a chance to rethink the connection between theory and disciplines, and a more urgent reformulation of ecology and economy.

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