ESSHC 2018, Belfast: Call for Proposals

Queen’s University, Belfast, 4th-7th April 2018

The ESSHC is a biennial conference that brings together historians and other scholars from across the world who are interested in studying the past using the methods of the social sciences. The programme is organised around Networks, each of which organises panel sessions (including collaborative sessions with other networks): some of these are period-based, some based on geographical area, and some focused on themes or methods. You can find further information about the ESSHC on its web page,

The ESSHC has had an Antiquity network since its inception; this has become the main regular forum for discussions of ancient economic and social history, an opportunity to meet scholars from other countries as well as to see what’s happening in other periods and other fields. The network is currently co-chaired by Neville Morley (Exeter: and Arjan Zuiderhoek (Ghent:

We now invite proposals for panel sessions and individual papers for the next meeting of the ESSHC, in Belfast in 2018. Panel sessions last two hours, and generally involve four (sometimes three) papers on a specific theme, with a chair, and with or without a discussant (who may also be the chair). Ideally, panel contributors should come from a mix of countries, and certainly a mix of universities, and should involve a balance of genders and of senior and junior scholars – but there is no requirement that the organiser of a session should be senior. The language of the conference is English.

We are particularly interested in proposals for inter-disciplinary and comparative panels, on such themes as urbanisation, credit and debt, or poverty and inequality; it is possible for suitable panels to be cross-listed with other networks, broadening the potential audience beyond specialists in antiquity. We will be happy to discuss any ideas you wish to put forward; the earlier you contact us, the more advice we’ll be able to offer.

There is also scope for proposing an individual paper, of roughly 20 minutes, if you do not wish to organise a whole panel. If your proposal is accepted, we may put you in touch with the organiser of a relevant session, to see if your paper could be accommodated there, or we may put together a composite panel of individual submissions. Again, the sooner you contact us to discuss your ideas or submit your proposal, the better. Please note that the number of panel sessions we can organise is limited, and if we get a large number of high-quality proposals then we are likely to favour coherent thematic sessions

Two important notes.  Firstly, proposals for both panel sessions and individual papers need to be submitted via the ESSHC website using their online pre-registration form by 1st May 2017 in order to be considered, even if you have been discussing the idea with us. Panel organisers need to submit an overall proposal for the session, including the names and paper titles of all participants, and also to ensure that all participants have sent in their abstracts and pre-registered by the deadline, with an indication of the name of the session to which their paper belongs. Secondly, the ESSHC does have a relatively substantial conference fee (but with a good discount for postgraduates), and does not have the resources to support travel expenses, so if you’re organising a panel you will need to make sure that all your speakers are aware that they’ll have to cover their own costs.

Once again, please do contact one or both of us if you would like to discuss proposing a paper or a panel.

Arjan ( & Neville (

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