WORCK-ELHN Conference Coming Soon, Vienna and online, 30 August-1 September 2021

Call for registration, deadline 15 July 2021


dear colleagues interested in the study of labour and coercion,

 while the European Commission discusses the details for a Digital Green Certificate to facilitate safe free movement inside the EU during the Covid-19 pandemic, we are happy to announce the opening of the registration period for our WORCK Conference 2. The conference, taking place from 30 August to 3 September 2021 in Vienna, is organised together with the European Labour History Network (ELHN).

The European Labour History Network was established at the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam in 2013. It consists of sixteen working groups focusing on specific themes such as factory labour, women’s labour, military labour, maritime labour etc. and organises a biennial international conference. The COST Action WORCK has emerged from one of the ELHN working groups in 2019. The University of Vienna, the grant holder institution of the COST Action WORCK, is now organising the joint conference of both networks.

Thanks to this cooperation, you will find a rich 5-day programme of plenary events and parallel sessions, organised either by the ELHN committee and the ELHN working groups or by the WORCK network and its working groups (see attachment). The first three days will be dedicated to the activities and individual projects of the working groups of both networks, framed by a joint opening event, a keynote lecture and a roundtable discussion organised by the ELHN committee, and an exhibition on labour and coercion organised by the WORCK network. The last one and a half days are devoted to a specific topic of the WORCK network and realised in a plenary setting. Under the title “Historicising the Concept of Europe in Global History”, the WORCK network invites for a conceptual discussion on the place of Europe in global labour history debates. Over the last three decades, global history has fostered a number of key contributions to the ongoing rethinking of the temporal and spatial constructs that underpin historical writing. This has led to a widening of horizons and has opened up new research agendas, in labour history as well as in social history in general. Today, it is no longer feasible to write the history of the world as a history of European expansion. And the history of work is no longer automatically framed as the history of supposedly Western models and their contribution to modernity. Yet, global history has only rarely confronted the highly unstable historical construct we call “Europe”. Therefore, these last one and a half conference days are dedicated to the need to historicise Europe as a conceptual frame in global history and discuss social inequalities in Europe – both in past and present. The respective discussions will be led by invited experts on the basis of a joint reader.

The conference will be carried out as a hybrid event. This means that all programme items will either be streamed or set up via Zoom. Conference participants decide upon registration whether they would like to participate on-site or online. Please note that due to the COST regulations, there will be two registration linksWORCK members and invited guests receive an individual registration link via email, while ELHN members and external participants need to register through our website: https://www.worck.eu/conference-2-2021-vienna/. The registration period takes place from 17 May to 15 July.

WORCK members and invited guests will receive partial or full reimbursement by the COST Action WORCK. Yet, all travel and hotel arrangements are to be made by the conference participants themselves. However, as the current pandemic remains a challenge for the planning and organisation of bigger events involving traveling and accommodation, we kindly ask you to check the cancellation policies for your travel and accommodation options and please don’t make any definite travel arrangements before the end of July. We will confirm the realisation of the conference in the planned format by 26 July