CfA: Academic Urbanism in the Eastern Bloc: Places and Spaces of Postwar Science

Timofey Rakov's picture

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Call for Publications
December 20, 2021
Call for Articles

Academic Urbanism in the Eastern Bloc: Places and Spaces of Postwar Science

(Call for Articles for a thematic section in Studia Historiae Scientiarum 2022, guest edited by Timofei Rakov and Mikhail Piskunov)



Decades after WWII saw the impressive development of sciences, especially hard sciences. New level of science and technology needed extended infrastructure – not only vast reactors or big biological laboratories, but the wide interconnected web of institutions. Gradually, scientific and technological institutions were becoming an urban core, as towns and city clusters formed around them. This new web of scientific and technological towns, technopoles in Allen J. Scott’s term, needed a more complex approach to the architecture of such settlements, organization of space and level of everyday consumption for its inhabitants. As Kate Brown mentions, such cities produced a “middle-class” level of consumption and values (Brown, 2013) and became centers of circulation of knowledge and ideas between two sides of the Cold War (Tatarchenko, 2013).

The 2023 thematic section of  Studia Historiae Scientiarum wants to examine the dimension of this process in the Eastern Bloc. Socialist countries perceived very seriously the idea of Scientific and Technological Revolution, formulated by J. D. Bernal in the 1950s, that should provide them the road to communism. Additionally new constructed science and technology cities, akademgorodoks or naukograds, corresponded very well with socialist economies' extensive plans and aspirations. We see socialist science and technology city as an interconnected unity of new visions of socialism/communism and new forms of socialist science. While some Soviet spaces of this new science such as Novosibirsk Akademgorodok (Josephson 1997) or Obninsk (Orlova 2017) were analyzed in historiography, we still need a complex investigation of an academic city phenomenon in all its international richness.

Thus, we invite proposals for the volume covering following topics

·       Formation of scientific spaces and places in a Eastern Bloc and beyond

·       Architecture, infrastructure and environment of these towns/cities

·       Everyday life in academic city

·       Social and cultural forms of socialist science and technology produced by spaces of new cities

·    &nb

Contact Info: 
Please send an abstract of no more than 500 words and a short biographical sketch to and The deadline for the submission of abstracts: December 20, 2021.
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