Call for Papers

Call for Papers and call for posters are now closed. The original Call for Papers and Call for Posters could be downloaded here:

Deadline for proposals for posters was the 3rd of May 2010.

Conference language: English

Reusing the Industrial Past conference has already received a delightful number, over 300 proposals, for paper presentations and sessions. The scientific programme of the conference will include many fresh perspectives on industrial and technological history.

The local organising committee has in co-operation with the international associations decided to call for more poster presentations for the conference in order to offer a possibility for various ongoing projects to present their perspectives and results. The deadline for poster proposals is the 3rd of May 2010. The letters of acceptance will be sent out on the 11th of May 2010.

We would like to encourage PhD-students to present their dissertation projects. We are also interested in different kinds of reuse case studies of industrial heritage all over the word. Also museum exhibitions and new innovative methods to present the history of technology and industrial heritage are welcome.

The difference between a poster and a oral paper presentation is that poster presentation is a written description of the study or article with illustrations and/or photographs which will be presented to the conference audience in printed form and placed on a poster board in the poster exhibition. The abstracts of the poster presentations are going to be published in the conference abstract book with all the already accepted presentations.

The posters will be on display during the first four days of the conference (from Tuesday the 10th to Friday the 13th). Your poster should be mounted by noon on Wednesday, 11th August the latest. There will be poster sessions during the coffee breaks in the morning and in the afternoon and during these sessions the authors are expected to be present at their poster. The date and time of the poster session will be informed to the corresponding author. The information will be in the final programme added to the conference website by the end of May as well as in the final programme included in the conference materials. The final poster codes and technical requirement are given in the separate message sent to the corresponding author in May. They could also be found on the conference web page. The size of the poster should be (max) 87 cm (width) x 117 cm (length).

The theme of the conference

As a joint conference, the primary theme 'Reusing the Industrial Past' is intended to be a broad idea covering various approaches. Clearly, the industrial past is reused whenever old industrial installations are renovated or adapted. There have been many attempts to preserve the most significant aspects of old industrial areas after productive activity has ceased, by giving them a new viable function. However, the idea of reusing the industrial past need not stop there. Old industrial and handicraft technology can also be reintroduced and reused in manufacturing various products or in explaining how they work to the public in exhibitions. Various kinds of 'retroproducts' are now in vogue, while people are looking for alternative technological solutions for plastics, electronics, concrete, atificial chemicals and fertilisers. Knowledge of old technologies is in demand. What technologies do historians suggest could be reused?

Manufacturing still has a strong impact on culture, working habits and ethics. The industrial past and obsolete technologies are also present in the way people think and use their language. For instance, "put the small pulley on" continues to be used as a metaphor in British English for speeding up. Similar examples can be found in other languages as well. For social historians, it would be interesting to discover practices and ethics of factory work that continue to be used in offices and shops today. The culture of work seems to change more slowly than work itself and technology in use.

The conference programme will include scientific and plenary sessions, poster presentations, business meetings and general assemblies of the organising societies, excursions, social events such as receptions and the banquet, and pre and post conference trips. The premises of the University of Tampere and the historical industrial buildings on the in the City Centre will serve as conference venues.

In order to make the conference theme as strong as possible, the programme committees have decided that also the posters must fit within one of the following sub-themes (which must be indicated on the proposal). The bullet points under the subthemes are simply examples of topics that could fit into the each subtheme.

  1. Nuts and Bolts Keep on Rolling
    • Deindustrialisation and restructuring: Threat or opportunity?
    • Stubborn technologies: Resistance to change
    • Technological outcasts: Products and solutions rejected by consumers
    • Technological comeback: Retroproducts and retrodesign
    • Reinventing the industrial past: Innovations that never existed
    • Legitimising competitiveness: Political and economic actions to support technological image and performance
    • Processes in change: Technology of textile manufacturing and papermaking
  2. Artefacts and Experiences in Transition: Challenges for Industrial Heritage
    • Canonisation of the symbols of industrial revolutions
    • Living and dead industrial landscapes
    • Regeneration through heritage
    • Reuse of industrial environments
    • Societal aims for the conservation of industrial heritage
    • Adapting technology and reforming industrial heritage
    • Contested pasts - the heritage of science, technology and industry in geo-political conflict
  3. Social History of Industry
    • Reinterpretations of the First Industrial Revolution
    • Social history of factory work
    • Identities of blue-collar workers and white-collar workers in industry
    • People and machines in industrial history
    • Masculine machines and female labour: Gender in industry
    • Local experiences: changes in work, vanishing employment, emerging opportunities
    • Twins astray? Labour history and industrial history
    • Serfs of looms and slaves of mobile phones
  4. Cultural History of Technology
    • Emotions and machines: Adored and hated technologies
    • Technological optimism and pessimism
    • Company cultures: Breaks and continuity
    • Ethics of factory work
    • Workers’ culture: Legitimising hard work
    • Long shadow of history: Influence of the industrial past in our present way of life
    • Fossilisation of factory rhetoric in language
    • Exploiting images of the industrial past
  5. Environmental History of Industrialisation and Deindustrialisation
    • Harnessing nature: Environmental exploitation
    • Interdependence of energy and mechanisation in the smoke-stack industries
    • Smoke-stack industry as an environmental burden
    • Environmental heritage of the First Industrial Revolution
    • Environmental consequences of deindustrialisation
  6. Museums and Industrial Memories
    • Collection policies for the industrial era
    • New perspectives for exhibiting industrial heritage
    • Challenges for museums in the postindustrial society
    • Museum architecture in old factories
  7. Others / Special issues
    • Open subtheme to any session or paper proposals related to the history of technology and/or industrial past

Proposal submissions

POSTER proposals must include (1) a 250-word (maximum) abstract in English; and (2) a short one-page CV.

Abstracts should include the author's name and email address, a short descriptive title, a concise statement of the presentation, a brief discussion of the sources, and a summary of the major conclusions.

Please indicate one of the specified subthemes for your poster.

The size of the poster should be (max) 87 cm (width) x 117 cm (length).

The final day for poster submissions is the 3rd of May 2010.

Send your abstract by using the web form:

As preferred presentation type, choose "poster" for submitting the form.

If web access is unavailable, proposals may be sent by fax to ICOHTEC 2010 at: +358 (0) 3 5656 6808.

Otherwise they may be sent via regular mail or courier, postmarked not later than the 29th April 2010. The mail address is:

c/o Museum Centre Vapriikki
PL 487
Alaverstaanraitti 5
33101 Tampere

All questions about the programme proposals should be submitted to the local organizing committee, icohtecticcih2010(at)

Queries about the conference venue, accommodations, registrations and social programme should be made to industrialpast2010.congress(at)