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Backchannels

Linguists first used the term backchannel to refer to the spontaneous responses and signals that provide interactivity to what is only apparently a one-way communication. Social media users have adopted the term to refer to the unofficial, multi-directional online conversation that parallels formal academic exchange at a lecture or conference. The Backchannels blog is intended to have a similar relationship to scholarly discourse in STS. It provides an outlet for alternative-format scholarly communications, publishing shorter, timelier, media-rich communiques of interest to the global STS community. The editors welcome proposed contributions.

Public Health in the Calais Refugee Camp: Environment, Health and Exclusion

Report-backs / Surindar Dhesi and Arshad Isakjee

title The ongoing emergency for refugees is having profound and hidden health consequences for thousands of displaced persons who live in informal ‘makeshift’ camps across Europe.

African cities in the changing global landscape

Reflections / Prince K. Guma

"Questions need to be posed as to how we ought to (dis)associate and (dis)connect from/with dominant and inextricable narratives, imaginaries and dichotomies if we must accurately subsume the African city within the increasingly precarious global present."

Silenced Issues 5| Coming to Terms with the Colorblindness of Contemporary STS

Reflections / Michael Mascarenhas

title "White privilege abounds in STS. We need to look no further than our STS departments and programs." Michael Mascarenhas unmasks the "white spaces in the black box" of contemporary STS.

Building STS Programs: Notes From an Initial Meeting

Report-backs / Sam Weiss Evans

Sam Weiss Evans reports on conversations held at 4S Boston about the challenges and promises of building STS Programs

Segundo Coloquio colombiano en estudios sociales de la ciencia: hacer la paz en un mundo posverdad

Report-backs / GESCTM Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Con el fin de ampliar y situar los debates sobre el postconflicto en Colombia y las discusiones sobre posverdad, algunos de los grupos en Colombia con agendas CTS/STS organizaron el Segundo Coloquio Nacional de Estudios Sociales de las Ciencias y las Tecnologías entre el 21 y el 23 del pasado Septiembre en Bogotá. (English version available)

Engendering Alice and Bob

Reflections / Quinn DuPont and Alana Cattapan

title Quinn DuPont and Alana Cattapan critically engage with the fictional characters of Alice and Bob. Characters that are meant to convey complex concepts – and thereby represent and reinforce gender norms in fields where women are already few.

The Space Between with Elina Mäkinen

Reflections / Aleka Gurel

Dr. Elina Mäkinen discusses her recent ST&HV article, "Action in the Space Between: From Latent to Active Boundaries."

Describing and intervening: Exploring the plurality of STS in India

Report-backs / Joseph Satish V

title Notes from a workshop and public lecture in the University of Hyderabad in India, where Prof. Wiebe Bijker engaged with themes around science, knowledge and responsible research.

Editorial Director Ken Wissoker on why he loves peer review

Reflections / Ken Wissoker

title I always urge a symptomatic approach. Why would someone suggest that something needed to be done at all? What wasn’t working that required a solution? It’s the author’s manuscript!

A Yolngu matha translation for 4S Sydney

Reflections / Michaela Spencer

title Michaela Spencer reports back on her experience of creating with Yirriṉiṉba ‘Yinin’ Dhurrkay an abstract in Aboriginal language – and a potential opening within 4S for Yolngu epistemic sensibilities to be listened to and respected.

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Reflections

African cities in the changing global landscape
Silenced Issues 5| Coming to Terms with the Colorblindness of Contemporary STS
Engendering Alice and Bob
The Space Between with Elina Mäkinen

Report-backs

Public Health in the Calais Refugee Camp: Environment, Health and Exclusion
Building STS Programs: Notes From an Initial Meeting
Segundo Coloquio colombiano en estudios sociales de la ciencia: hacer la paz en un mundo posverdad
Describing and intervening: Exploring the plurality of STS in India

Projects

The Third Year of #QueerSTS4S and Call for 2018 Organizers
Dis—ease with X and Y: Disclosing Digital Sociology
How migrant registration infrastructures co-produce citizens, institutions and territory
Developing New STS Minors: The Case of Cal Poly

Reviews

Book Review: Cotton and Race Across the Atlantic: Britain, Africa, and America, 1900-1920
Renewable energy for STS scholarship: the Handbook of Science and Technology Studies
Betwixt and Between Augmentation and Automation: Some Reflections after Watching “Sully”
‘Hard’ Surveillance and ‘Soft’ Surveillance: The Quantified Self at Work

Backchannels Editors

Steven Jackson, Chair, 4S Web Committee

Steven Jackson, Conferences, journals, and events

Assistant Editors: Aleka Gurel, Yelena Gluzman

Gloria Baigorrotegui, Reviews, reblogs, and STS commentary from Asia, Africa & Latin America

Assistant Editors: Fredy Mora-Gámez, Prince Guma, Joseph Satish

Amanda Windle, Reviews, reblogs, and STS commentary from North America, Europe, and Australia

Assistant Editors: Leo Matteo Bachinger, Madeleine Pape

Anita Chan, Conference Blog Editor

For contact information, see the Editorial Guidelines page.