CFP: 1st Global Conference: Protoscience, Health and Well-Being

full name / name of organization: 
Dr. Rob Fisher/ Inter-Disciplinary.Net

1st Global Conference
Protoscience, Health and Well-Being

Wednesday 30th January – Friday 1st February 2013
Sydney, Australia

Call for Presentations:

The popular experiences of alternative healing, DIY and free and open source technology are everyday experiences of the contemporary individual. These experiences are being conceptualised by Fuller (2010) as 'anti-establishment science movements' which tacitly challenge the highly socially positioned 'scientific expert', the social agent of the establishment science. In the field of health, these movements are challenging the biomedical domination in the field. One of the responses to deal with the authority challenges has been the absorption of selective alternative healing practices (such as acupuncture, homeopathy) into the established health systems while reasserting the central place of biomedicine with continued usage of the referents 'alternative' and 'complementary'.

As agents of the 'anti-establishment science movements', 'lay' people become involved into everyday science and knowledge production, they become protoscientists. For example, blog discussion on the side-effects of a particular medicine/drug can be more personal, revealing and informative and can go beyond what an information leaflet or a clinician may offer. While blogging, the 'lay' person generates and exchanges knowledge with the other bloggers that may be useful for one's health. There is a paucity of literature depicting these movements as 'bottom up' challenges of establishment science literature. This kind of authority challenge has only marginally been considered by the 'establishment' science (for example: Fuller (2010)) and this conference will provide a platform for such consideration and discussion with specific focus on self-healing, health knowledge co-production and DIY treatments. This conference welcomes papers from various fields of study, such as social sciences, humanities, medical sciences and philosophy.

Presentations, papers, performances, work-in-progress and workshops are invited on any issues related to the following themes:

Alternative and self-healing practices beyond the relational milieu vis-à-vis a conventional/non-conventional medicine binary
The empowering effect of the free and open source technology vis-à-vis the status of the individual/the agent as knowledgeable agent in the field of health
Everyday science, self-healing and empowerment
The effect of the DIY practices on established health systems and peoples' personal lives
The embeddedness of protoscience in the everyday life
The responses of the 'challenged' biomedical establishment science
The consequences of the anti-establishment science movements for economic relations determining the health care industry
Discussion of the relevance of these movements in relation to the existent theories of power
Critical assessment of the knowledge 'anarchy' and how the 'non-expert' knowledge informs the prevailing health science
Philosophical underpinnings of protoscience as everyday science
The relevance of the historical and socio-political context regarding what constitutes 'mainstream' in the health sector

We actively encourage participation from practitioners and non-academics with an interest in the topic as well as pre-formed three paper panels

What to Send:
300 word abstracts or presentation proposals should be submitted simultaneously to both Organising Chairs by 14th September 2012; abstracts may be in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats with the following information and in this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation, c) email address, d) title of abstract, e) body of abstract.
E-mails should be entitled: SCIENCE Abstract Submission.

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.

Organising Chairs

Irena Veljanova:
Rob Fisher:

The conference is part of the Ethos programme of research projects. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and exciting.

For further details of the project, please visit:

For further details of the conference, please visit:

Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.