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More-than human research and innovation 
Thomas Franssen (Leiden University)
Robert Smith (The University of Edinburgh)
Michael Bernstein (AIT, Austrian Institute of Technology, GmbH)
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Traditional Open Panel

Short Abstract:

This panel brings multispecies studies into conversation with STS. We focus on the productive unruliness of multispecies collaborations and seek to think about the in/exclusion of other-than human stakeholders in research and innovation, as well as its governance.

Long Abstract:

The last few years, scholars in STS and adjacent fields have started to explore the stakes of other-than humans in knowledge production. For instance, Szymanski, Smith, and Calvert (2021: 3) draw insights from multispecies studies into responsible research and innovation and invite scientists to approach living creatures as “partners in inquiry”. Partnering with stakeholders in the production of knowledge has become mainstream especially in service of sustainability transitions. Yet, the envisioned stakeholder is usually distinctly human.

Bringing multispecies studies into conversation with studies of knowledge production and governance, and positioning other-than humans as actual stakeholders, invokes new relations between humans and other-than humans, amongst other-than humans, and between humans. It urges questions about who is included or excluded in relations of knowledge production, how, and why.

In this open track we aim to create a discussion about the worth, organisation, and governance of collaboration across species barriers, taking into account the productive unruliness of multispecies collaboration in worlds of research and innovation, and its governance.

We hope to draw on insights from, especially, environmental anthropology, and animal geography, to explore multispecies collaboration in contexts of research and innovation. We seek to think about in/exclusion of other-than human stakeholders and the conceptualization and realization of agency in ecological restoration, sustainable agriculture, and other future ecologies, as well as environmental science and governance, for example the instantiation of the “do no significant harm” principle in European research and innovation.

Accepted papers:

Session 1