Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Call for Papers: Footprints of Industry 2009
Fe09: Coalbrookdale 300: Footprints of Industry

Conference Announcement and Call for Papers

3rd-6th June 2009
United Kingdom

A conference commemorating the 300th anniversary of the first successful commercial use of coke to smelt iron, taking place in the shadow of the very furnace that saw the birth of the industrial revolution.

The 300th anniversary of coke smelting is an appropriate moment to consider the impact of the industrial revolution on the modern world. It will be 50 years since the iconic blast furnace at Coalbrookdale, often called the 'birthplace of industry', was rediscovered. That last half century has seen a dramatic expansion of research into the processes of industrialisation, coupled with overwhelming public support for the conservation of its material remains. The wide range of disciplines involved: archaeology, history, metallurgy and conservation, have themselves developed in response to the challenges of understanding this often fragile heritage. Big themes and issues arise which have tremendous relevance to the world today: environmental change, social transformation, technological progress, leisure as industry and industry as leisure.

This conference provides an exciting opportunity for inter-disciplinary debate, discussion and analysis, in the context of a vibrant new programme of restoration and re-interpretation of the Coalbrookdale site by the Ironbridge Gorge Museum. In 2009 we can find ways to take forward the study of these important processes and bring our findings to bear on the reality of life today.

Outline Programme

Wednesday 3rd June 2009
Registration : Welcome : Wine Reception

Thursday 4th June 2009
Friday 5th June 2009
Saturday 6th June 2009
Papers in plenary sessions (see below); guided tours; dinners and party

Sunday 7th June 2009
Optional guided tours of the industrial heritage of the west midlands region

Overall Thematic Outline

Please note that for all sessions, papers from the following groups will be particularly welcomed:
* commercial/contracting/consulting archaeologists, at all levels of seniority
* junior academic researchers (masters, doctoral or post-doctoral students)
* independent researchers, including local study groups and community archaeology programmes
* maritime, contemporary, historical and industrial archaeologists of all shapes and sizes
* non-archaeological disciplines, especially those examining similar issues in the contemporary world
* heritage management and conservation professionals

The overall aim is to try and capture the amazing breadth, diversity and interdisciplinary nature of studies from the fields of the humanities, social sciences and pure science which are investigating the period c.1500 to the present day and the various technological, social, cultural and environmental impacts of industriation (by which we include the disciplines of archaeology, history, art history, metallurgy, anthropology, landscape history & archaeology, economic history, sociology, geography, historical geography, historical agronomy, environmental sciences, palaeoenvironmental studies, psychology etc. ... in no particular order and not intentionally excluding anyone who feels their researches are relevant but are not on this list).

There is also extensive space for poster presentations.

This conference is the principal annual conference of the Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology, the Historical Metallurgy Society, the Association for Industrial Archaeology and the Newcomen Society.

Keynote presentations will be given by David Crossley, Marilyn Palmer and Sir Neil Cossons.

Publication of the proceedings is anticipated.

Session Outlines

All sessions are plenary, and each session is expected to have thematic and topical overlaps with others. Some papers outlining similar sites, or using similar methodologies, might well fit into different sessions depending on their emphasis. For example papers using osteological evidence may appear in any or all of Session 2, 3 and 4. Equally papers on shipbuilding might appear in any or all of Sessions 3, 4 and 5. Depending on the actual papers recieved, some sessions may be split or merged or otherwise altered. Whilst papers on specific projects will be welcomed, submissions should strive to discuss the work within the broader thematic contexts outlined below.

Session 1: Origins of Industrialisation
Why was north-west Europe the centre of post-medieval industrialisation? How did the process of industrialisation occur, and what were the factors which enabled its rapid development? Why did contemporary societies elsewhere, which were arguably more technically advanced, not develop in the same way? Papers in this session will seek to explore these and other questions. Studies investigating social, cultural, environmental and political issues surrounding the development of industrialisation in various parts of the world are especially encouraged. Papers from ongoing or recent research into the late medieval and post-medieval periods in north-west Europe are particularly welcomed, together with contributions from Africa, China and the Mediterranean.

Session 2: The Inheritance of Abraham Darby
The iron industry was actually the last significant metallurgical industry to adopt mineral fuel. This session will look at the earlier use of peat, coal, coke and other fossil fuels in other industries during the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. Glass, pottery and non-ferrous metallurgy are particularly important, but the ways in which adaptations were made socially and technologically in related industries will also be examined. This session will also endeavour to explore the cultural and environmental consequences of the new technology.

Session 3: Technology, science and religion
Industrialisation took place before and during the Englightenment. Many aspects of technology were developed as the result of expanding knowledge of the physical universe, conversely new discoveries in science facilitated industrial development. At the same time new notions of how humanity should live were being expounded - sometimes violently. Key themes will include the role of religious outlook in industry, relationships with science, and the broadercultural impact of technological improvement, examining the radical changes in mindset that took place in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries as a result of industrialisation

Session 4: Britain as an industrial society
The social impact of industrialsation was overwhelming. This session will look very widely at Britain as an industrial society by examining the social and demographic changes wrought by industrialisation, including landscape change and the rural economy as well as urban industrialisation, the adoption of the factory system and the ways in which capitalism was promoted, resisted and adapted.

Session 5: Industrialisation and globalisation
The process of post-medieval industrialisation was a global one, intimately linked with European colonial expansion. This was not simply a one-way process, nor even one of physical interaction; rather the discovery of new worlds provoked new ways of looking at the old world, and new technologies and industries. Papers in this session will deal with the global impact of industrialisation, including the development of international capitalism and its effect on local and regional identities, responses to environmental change and the impact on indigenous peoples.

Session 6: Understanding industrial heritage
The period of industrialisation has left a great physical legacy in terms of buildings, structures, sites and landscapes. In north-western Europe in particular this legacy is sometimes overwhelming, and existing mechanisms for the preservation and interpretation of pre-industrial sites and monuments are often inadequate for dealing with the complexity and fragility of industrial heritage. This session will look at the management of industrial heritage sites and landscapes, and issues involved in conserving industrial heritage; in particular it will explore the conflicts and tensions between ensuring wide access and preserving the integrity of sites, monuments and landscapes.

Session 7: The way forward
Understanding the ways in which industrial processes shaped society and the environment during the last 300 years is only the beginning of a much greater contribution to the broader debate of how the world is going to change for the next 300 years. Papers in this session will examine the ways in which our understanding of the processes of industrialisation can inform new developments in the UK and overseas. This session will not only look at the way in which we deal with the inheritance of industrialisation in the UK, but will also include particular reference to present-day industrialisation in China and the emerging economies of eastern Europe

Abstracts should be submitted as 'PDF', 'Plain Text' or 'Word 2003' files (or earlier Word versions (no 'docx' files please)) to

by 31st December 2008

If you think you might like to submit a paper, but are unsure as to which session it might fit into, or feel that it fits into the overall conference themes but is not catered for by the structure described above, then please email to the address above with a brief synopsis and a telephone number and we will contact you by telephone before 7th December 2008 to discuss it.

This conference is being organised by Paul Belford on behalf of the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust.


Paul Belford, BSc, MA, MIFA
Head of Archaeology and Monuments
Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust
United Kingdom

[url=\"\"]Paul Belford[/url]
It's still not too late to submit an abstract... if we get it by the end of the month. Provisional conference programme and delegate fees, plus details of accommodation, will be posted soon.

Have you still got space for people wanting to show posters?

Thunder rolled. ... It rolled a six.
Yes, poster displays very welcome. Or why not consider giving a short presentation? I would be keen to have short talks (5-10 minutes) on 'work in progress' as well as more substantial papers.

More details, a provisional outline and a booking form are now available on the website..

Here is a link straight to the booking form.

As noted above, offers of relevant presentations - particularly shorter papers or posters on current or recent projects - are very welcome.

Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  industry owned’ group - deals with Pay and conditions. BAJR 1 2,393 10th July 2014, 06:44 PM
Last Post: BAJR
  Call for Responses on the Future of Local Government Archaeology Services BAJR 2 2,913 17th January 2014, 05:51 PM
Last Post: SocAntiquaries
  Researchers call for debate on underwater cultural heritage BAJR 2 2,782 1st December 2013, 07:58 PM
Last Post: kevin wooldridge
  Archaeology Pay & Training: Can The Industry Do More? BAJR 1 1,888 1st September 2013, 04:21 PM
Last Post: BAJR
  Empire of Dirt: time to call time on commercial archaeology in Northern Ireland? BAJR 49 28,364 1st March 2013, 12:08 PM
Last Post: Unitof1
  Call for more time on Flintshire Roman dig BAJR 7 5,290 9th February 2013, 03:47 PM
Last Post: Dinosaur
  Community Archaeology and the University - call for Pappers - NORDIC TAG BAJR 2 2,571 21st January 2013, 08:27 PM
Last Post: Gilraen
  IfA Conference 2013: Call for sessions BAJR 1 1,688 11th October 2012, 07:27 PM
Last Post: BAJR
  Leaked ? IAA closure papers BAJR 2 2,542 11th October 2012, 08:24 AM
Last Post: BAJR
  The Archaeological Journal Volume 169 for 2012 Call for Papers BAJR 13 7,875 12th January 2012, 07:29 PM
Last Post: BAJR

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)