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Reports and commentary from meetings, workshops, and seminars of interest to the STS community, with images and other media.

STS Underground: Images from an Emerging Subfield

Abby Kinchy and Roopali Phadke / 22 February, 2016

title Societies around the world today are grappling with two confounding questions: “Should we dig here?” and “How should we reclaim the surface of this land?” These problems fall into the domain of STS because, as each presentation in the STS Underground sessions at 4S 2015 demonstrated, deciding where to dig and how to reclaim the surface involves technoscientific processes that remain largely unexamined.

Apuntes desde EXPLORA-CONICYT y la visibilidad de la ciencia y tecnología escolar en Latinoamérica

Gloria Baigorrotegui / 18 January, 2016

title Children and young people from schools throughout Chile and school representatives from three Latin American countries: Mexico, Peru and Argentina met from 24 to 26 November 2015 in the city of Valparaiso to present their scientific projects in the final of the XVI School National Congress of Science and Technology. 53 projects were selected in three categories: i) Natural Sciences, ii) Research in engineering and technology and iii) Social Sciences. Gloria Baigorrotegui tells us her experience as an external evaluator of this initiative.

A construção de uma rede de engenharia popular

Rede de Engenharia Popular Oswaldo Sevá / 14 December, 2015

title The engineering subject is rarely connected with issues such as inequality, poverty, alternative development projects and society. The connections, however, are many and very important. Brazil is an unequal country, where much of the population has no access to basic rights such as housing, sanitation, etc. But these are not the only difficulties these people face. Lack of access to public universities, to the engineering courses and to developed technologies are added to the immense challenges that poor people, on the outskirts of the cities or the countryside, have faced daily.

Revisando la universidad

Fabian Prieto / 16 November, 2015

title Over two years, the Learning to see systems group has worked in an interdisciplinary approach around the question of how to make visible the values and epistemologies embedded in scientific and technological complex systems. With this ambitious goal, teachers and students have followed a path that connected communication studies, art history, social studies of science and technology and artistic practice. Learning to see system emerged in 2013 from a proposal endorsed by the Graduate College of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, within the program INTERSECT. Under the leadership of Kevin Hamilton, Professor of Art and Design, the group made progress in its discussions from a curriculum that included four doctoral level courses and participation in workshops designed by the group itself. This is the case of the workshop "Revising the University", which had place on May 27, 2015.

IV Escuela Doctoral Iberoamericana de Estudios Sociales y Políticos sobre la Ciencia y la Tecnología

Sandra Daza-Caicedo / 14 September, 2015

title Between July 7 and 10, 2015, it took place at the University of Valparaiso (Chile) the IV Ibero-American Doctoral School of Social Studies on Science and Technology ,organized by the Latin American Society for Social Studies of Science and Technology ESOCITE. Twentyseven doctoral students from Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Chile, Colombia and Mexico attended the School. The meeting was sponsored by the Red CYTED (Ibero-American Science and Technology for Development) "Analysis on the Dynamics of Science and Society", CLACSO Working Group "Science and society: the social uses of knowledge Latin America and social inclusion", University of Chile, University of La Frontera and the host institution, the University of Valparaiso.

Tecnologías en Zonas de Conflicto: Una Mirada desde el Contexto Latinoamericano

Karla Palma / 24 August, 2015

title In this post Karla Palma shares with us the reflections of a group of scholars studying STS in Latin America and specially about the role of technology in areas of conflict. These reflections are materialized in the "Computing in Zones of Conflict: Interdisciplinary Perspectives from Latin America" panel. Which was presented in San Juan, Puerto Rico, in the framework of the conference of the Latin American Studies Association (LASA). The main question which guided the meeting was, what the connection points are between our research agendas in relation to study of technologies in Latin America? from the beginning, we recognized that our work takes place in areas where there are latent social conflicts, covering areas such as neo extractivism, militarization, drug trafficking, or the marginalization of non-dominant memories, but what else can we visualize from these spaces?

Hacia la consolidación de los estudios CTS en chile: II encuentro chileno de estudios sociales de la

Ronald Cancino & Helder Binimelis / 10 August, 2015

title Social and Political Studies of Science, Technology and Society in Chile are in the process of steadily growing. At present, there are recognizable research groups in the country, nestled in prestigious universities, creating networks, emerging research centers in various subjects and spaces for meeting and debate. STS studies in Chile have been meeting over 2 large spaces: the Working Group "Sociology of Science and Technology" of the Chilean Congress of Sociology, and the meetings of the CTS-Chile Network. The latter comes after the First Meeting held at the Universidad Alberto Hurtado in Santiago de Chile in early 2014. Both the CTS Chile Network as the annual meetings seek greater presence and visibility to a growing body of research in the field of STS in the country.

Ciencia, ciudadanía y experticia en la Evaluación de Impactos Ambientales

Gloria Baigorrotegui / 27 July, 2015

title On Monday July 13 STS researchers sensitive to issues related to environmental activism came together to present some of the results of their research. This happened in a setting that gathered public policy officers and citizens in general. The seminar and symposium was entitled "Science, citizenship and expertise in Environmental Impact Assessment. A dialogue increasingly mure nurtured?. It was held in the hall Presidents ex- National Congress in Santiago de Chile.

Roundtable Report: Who Needs Visual Anthropology?

Rebeca Ibáñez Martín / 20 July, 2015

title A productive debate would be one in which visual anthropology is discussed for its theoretical effects and potentialities. Otherwise, visual anthropology will get lost again in a "reality debate": Are we representing reality or not? Are we fair and accurate in representing the reality of the other? Such debate ends up in another even more complicated debate, that between us and them. The question of who is representing whom has been discussed in postcolonial studies of film for many decades and in sharp terms.


Claudia Aguirre / 16 July, 2015

title Between may 24 and 29 this year, took place in Medellin, Colombia, the XIV Congress of the Network of Popularization of science in Latin America and the Caribbean (RedPOP). This network was created in 1990 in Rio de Janeiro to promote the field communication of science at that time made a timid appearance in Latin America. Claudia Aguirre shares a report back of the event.

Expandindo fronteiras: V Reunião de Antropologia da Ciência e da Tecnologia

Guilherme Sá / 29 June, 2015

title post about the V Anthropology Meeting of Science and Technology in Brazil

Primer Coloquio Colombiano de Estudios Sociales de la Ciencia y la tecnología

Yuri Jack Gómez-Morales / 18 May, 2015

title The First National Workshop of Social Studies of Science was held on 7, 8 and 9 April in Bogotá, Colombia

Continuity and Change in the Social Science of Risk, Hazards, and Disasters

AJ Faas and Tess Kulstad / 04 May, 2015

title The need for social science research and practice in risk, hazards and disasters is more pressing than ever before. The Risk and Disaster Topical Interest Group believes that not only can social scientists contribute by helping untangle the human dimensions behind catastrophic disaster processes, but they can offer valuable insights on how to best assist communities in need. Our network of over 200 members is an excellent resource to share information, resources, and facilitate conversations among scholars, practitioners, and students.

Report on the 3rd CPERI Workshop, San Diego, March 2015

Kean Birch / 13 April, 2015

title A report on the 3rd Changing Political Economic of Research and Innovation (CPERI) Workshop held at UC San Diego in March 2015, and organized by Charles Thorpe and Martha Lampland from the Science Studies Program there. Originally started by David Tyfield in 2012, the CPERI workshops are an attempt to reinvigorate or renew interest in the political economy of science, research and innovation.

Making Change Bogotá una reflexión desde Ártica Uruguay

Mariana Fossatti and Jorge Gemetto / 27 March, 2015

title Two members of Ártica reflect on the meeting "Making Change" held in Bogotá, Colombia, in February 2015. The meeting was part of an international long-term research driven by Leuphana Centre for Digital Cultures, which seeks to question the hegemonic ways of understanding change by conducting intensive workshops where activists, academics and artists from different countries participate. In Bogotá the event was organized in collaboration with Karisma Foundation and the Javeriana University. The participants came from different disciplines and areas of activism: gender, rights and new technologies, free culture, open science, social economy, sustainable development, etc. They shared the experience in digital activism and the critical use of new media for the pursuit of social change, with a major emphasis on the perspective of art. (Spanish, with Inglés Summary)
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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.