Call for Proposals

24th Nordic Intercultural Communication Conference 

Diversities, mobilities, and cultural identities in the balance

23-25 November, 2017, Jyväskylä, Finland 

Human movement and relocation in the 21st century, by choice or in response to human-made or natural disasters, is becoming increasingly common. One outcome of this trend is that many people have become entrenched in, or fallen back onto, defensive lines and discourse as a means to protect their cultural identities. However, engaging dissimilar others--politically, professionally, or personally--from a defensive posture makes productive intercultural interaction and policy making difficult at best, and perhaps unattainable.

This situation poses significant challenges to ongoing peaceful negotiation of cultural identities. In other words, what makes me “me,” you “you,” and us “us”? Whether taken from the perspective of the immigrants, their offspring, host societies, ethnic minorities, or institutional actors operating in the field, the process of identity building and maintenance has always resulted from comparing oneself to “the other,” in seeking out both similarities and differences. It is enhanced or undermined by the stories told within oneself and among friends and compatriots. The process can be productive, mind-expanding, inclusive, and beneficial, just as easily as it can be fraught with contradictions, tension, fear, and reactionary stances.

But who is the owner of a culture or cultural information? Who is allowed to be an “authentic” representative of a culture? When is the assumed nature of a culture--or one’s cultural identity--allowed to evolve and by what means? What is the role of people invested in the field of intercultural communication? What kind of networks, initiatives, best practices, and hopeful ideas can be offered or advanced? How does theoretical insight best intersect with practical challenges?

We open the call for presentations and work group proposals related, but not limited, to the following themes:

  • Intergroup negotiations concerning cultural, ethnic, religious, and linguistic identities and identity hybridity in various contexts
  • Processes and strategies for initiating, maintaining, and furthering intergroup interaction or research
  • Issues related to perceived threat and its manifestations in intercultural communication
  • Theories and applications related to the field of intercultural communication, competency development, and education
  • Taking it to the street: the application of intercultural practices in various disciplines and activities, and/or the commitment of international, national, regional, institutional and educational policies and applications toward our shared future
  • Emerging challenges for intercultural communication research

Presentation proposals follow an abstract format of approximately 500 words, including references. Work group proposals should also be approximately 500 words, including rationale, proposed participants as well as their individual contribution.

The submission system will open 1 May, 2017; submission deadline has been postponed until August 13, 2017.

We hope to see you in Jyväskylä!