International Research Conference, Lancaster UK, 18 - 20 July 2016
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Call for Proposals

The conference theme, Locating Social Justice in Close-Up Research in Higher Education, and the three ‘think pieces’ provided by the keynote speakers, invite participants to engage with questions around the ways in which close-up higher education research relates to social justice issues and practices.

In very different ways, each of the think pieces addresses the conference theme. The differences in the focus and concerns of the three think pieces are intended to offer conference participants a number of different angles from which to think about this theme. In responding to one or more of the think pieces in their proposals, participants might choose to build on the work in the think piece, to contest or challenge the ideas or assumptions they contain, or to show how these issues have arisen in their own research. In building the conference around a common theme and the three think pieces the intention is to encourage the development of in-depth collective conversations over the three days of the conference.


We invite proposals for contributions that critically explore questions relating to locating social justice in close-up higher education research. All proposals will be subject to blind peer review and authors will be notified of the outcome of the process by 21st March 2016.

Proposals may include contributions in the following areas:

  • Methodological and ethical issues – for example, to what extent does research relating to social justice require particular methodological approaches?
  • Conceptual issues and theories of social justice –for example, what are the implications of different conceptualisations of social justice for higher education research?
  • Student or Participant involvement in research – for example, what social justice issues pertain to the roles given to, or adopted by, research participants?
  • Relationships between close-up social justice research and large scale studies – for example, to what extent should close-up research also relate to established large-scale studies?
  • Student-teacher relationships in higher education – for example, issues of power, sharing control, mutual identity
  • Uses of social justice research to inform policy and practice – for example, to what extent can or should such research be tailored to the mainstream forums of policy makers and policy actors?
  • Contextualizing social justice in an increasingly internationalized higher education sector – for example, can social justice research ever cross between cultures or contexts?

There are two forms of proposals:

  • Single Paper proposals
  • Smposium Proposals

People are welcome to submit more than one proposal, however, where space is limited we will give priority to ensuring one paper from each person.

Single Paper Proposals

For those wishing to submit single paper proposals, an outline of 1000 words should be deposited in the conference dropbox. The closing date for submissionhas been extended until the 29th February, 2016. The outline should iinclude a discussion of how the paper relates to the conference theme and to one or more of the keynote ‘think pieces’.

The peer review criteria for single paper proposals are available to download here

Symposium Proposals

Symposium sessions will take up a full conference session (90 minutes) and will involve a minimum of three conference participants. A symposium might involve a collection of up to three papers on a related theme or an innovative use of the space that could include an interactive activity or a performance piece. Proposals for Symposia should be approximately 1500 words and, in addition to discussing their relation to the conference theme and one or more of the ‘think pieces’, should provide an outline of how the symposium will make use of the 90 minute space. Those thinking of submitting a symposium are encouraged to use the HECU discussion list to find partners to work with in developing their proposals. Any participants who would like to discuss their proposed symposium prior to submission can contact Paul Ashwin or Jan McArthur.

Download the peer review criteria for symposium proposals

One joint proposal for each symposium should be deposited in the conference dropbox. The closing date for submission is 29th February, 2016. The Administrator will acknowledge receipt within 48 hours.

Final Papers

Presenters will be expected to provide digital copies of their papers to the conference office by 20th June 2016 - These will be placed on the website for delegates to access. Those who wish to have their papers considered for the special issue should submit a copy to the Conference Desk during the conference. Those involved in symposia can discuss whether providing written papers is appropriate for their session with Paul Ashwin

Authors should use the template provided when writing their final paper.

Key Dates

Submission of proposals
29th February 2016
Notification of outcomes
21 March 2016
Early Bird Registration deadlline
31 March 2016
Authors to submit full papers
20th June 2016
Registration Deadline
1 July 2014
18th - 20th July, 2016

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SRHE Department of Educational Research Lancaster University