The Politics of Nuclear Waste

Jo-Ansie  van Wyk's picture
Type: 
Call for Papers
Date: 
December 5, 2022
Subject Fields: 
Diplomacy and International Relations, Geography, Humanities, Human Rights, Political Science

Call for Papers

The Politics of Nuclear Waste

One of the key features of the Anthropocene is the prevalence of radioactive waste since the dawn of the nuclear age. Each stage of the nuclear fuel cycle produces radioactive waste. Thus, radioactive waste is produced by mining companies, nuclear power stations, nuclear medical facilities, the nuclear arms industry, research reactors, and the decommissioning of nuclear facilities. Nuclear waste poses health and environmental risks and hence requires safe and secure disposal and management at appropriate sites. Host communities have been called sacrifice zones as the waste they store is most often produced elsewhere. Given the longevity of nuclear waste, its disposal requires careful planning and a consideration of its impact on future generations. Moreover, the siting process is often politically divisive and adds another layer to the complex nature of the process.   

The purpose of this call is two-fold. First, it serves as a call for paper proposals for an interdisciplinary webinar on the local, domestic, and international politics of nuclear waste scheduled for 2 and 3 February 2023 (11:00-16:00 SAST on both days). The second purpose is to plan an edited volume on the domestic and international politics of nuclear waste for a reputable publisher.

The webinar aims to draw scholars and practitioners from a variety of fields within the Nuclear Humanities and Social Sciences.

Proposals are invited on, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • The ethics of nuclear waste
  • The history of nuclear waste and its disposal
  • Techno-nationalism and nuclear waste
  • Siting nuclear waste disposal facilities
  • Public opinion on nuclear waste and waste disposal facilities
  • Nuclear geography and nuclear waste disposal
  • The safety and security of nuclear waste and its disposal
  • Secrecy and nuclear waste
  • Shame and nuclear waste
  • Civil society and nuclear waste
  • Nuclear waste contamination
  • Geohydrological contamination and nuclear waste
  • Transporting nuclear waste
  • Architecture of nuclear waste facilities
  • International coalitions against nuclear waste
  • The Global South and nuclear waste
  • Nuclear waste policies
  • Mining and nuclear waste
  • Nuclear weapons and waste
  • Nuclear waste imaginaries

Proposals on these and other nuclear waste related topics in the Nuclear Humanities and Social Sciences are most welcome.

Please submit an abstract of no more than 300 words by 5 December 2022 to the organiser, Professor Jo-Ansie van Wyk, Department of Political Sciences, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa via vwykjak@unisa.ac.za. The outcome of submissions will be communicated no later than 15 December 2022.

For more information, please contact the organiser, Professor Jo-Ansie van Wk, Department of Political Sciences, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa.

Contact Info: 

Professor Jo-Ansie van Wyk, Department of Political Sciences, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa.

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