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Knowledge, power and people: who gets to know and who gets to decide? 
Saheli Datta Burton (UCL)
Stephen Hughes (University College London)
Michel Wahome (UCL)
Tiago Jorge Fernandes da Mata (University College London)
Charlotte Sleigh (Unuversity College London)
Carina Fearnley Carina Fearnley (UCL)
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Traditional Open Panel

Short Abstract:

This panel pulls together scholarship exploring the challenges and opportunities that emerge where power and knowledge connect. With empirical examples from across a range of STS topics, long-standing questions about whose knowledge counts will be explored.

Long Abstract:

Questions about how practices of power structure people’s relationships to knowledge are longstanding in Science and Technology Studies (STS). In this open panel we pull together scholars whose work explores the challenges and opportunities that emerge where power and knowledge connect, in STS research, policy, community spaces and classrooms.

This panel is embedded in the conference theme exploring transformation and understanding the forms of normativity that shape our research in STS. Inevitably we bring our own politics, assumptions and experiences to the table when we do research and when we teach. And those multiple, interconnected fields in which our research is situated are, in their own turn, shaped by their own histories, political commitments and those of other colleagues. These are central concerns for STS scholars whose work explores questions of power and knowledge. But it is not always easy to ask those same questions of our own work.

We invite scholars interested in what happens in STS research when we explicitly address questions of power, whether in community spaces, classrooms, policy settings or our own research. By discussing STS research on contemporary issues such as environmental policy, disaster warning, warfare and secrecy, knowledge practices in medical contexts in the Global South this panel will bring people together to talk about three cross-cutting themes. First, which publics are and are not pulled into view through these examples? Second, how, where, when and with whom does knowledge flow? Third, how might we think critically, usefully and collaboratively about power and inequalities with those affected through our own research?

We invite research contributions (papers) for a combined format open panel to include a traditional open paper panel and participants for a corresponding discussion workshop.

Accepted papers: