International Research School in Conceptual History and Political Thought

Liberals and Liberalisms:

Southern-Northern, Western-Eastern Perspectives and Experiences

The 7th Concepta Research Training Seminar
International Research School in Conceptual History and Political Thought
University of Málaga, Facultad de Filosofía y Letras, Sala de Juntas, 11-12 June 2012

Call for papers

To update comparative research in historiographical methods while exploring interdisciplinary cooperation is part of the all-year-round activities by Concepta, the International Research School in Conceptual History and Political Thought. The 7th Concepta Research Training Seminar will be held at the University of Málaga, Spain, 11-12 June 2012.

Up until recently most historical research on liberalism has been produced in separate academic worlds, divided by languages, methodologies and curricula. Earlier on, comparative studies failed, with exceptions, to acknowledge the plurality of traditions in moral, economic, political and legal thought shaped in the nineteenth century in Europe and America. Liberalism’s plurality has grown since across countries and disciplines to form a recognizable complex of intellectual traditions, indispensable to understand both modern history and the present.

Translations of scholarly works serve academic communication but are no substitute for international cooperative research. Over the last decades, especially in the field of conceptual history, new research teams have embarked on projects to study the comparative history of political thought. Liberalism is at the crossroads of modern political traditions.

Liberals and Liberalisms: Southern-Northern, Western-Eastern Perspectives and Experiences aims to discuss conceptual and historiographical approaches outlining a comparative view of liberalism’s history and politics. Concepta research training seminars convene doctoral and senior scholars from different countries to debate on ongoing research. The 7th Concepta Seminar is partly connected to the preparations of the Liberalisms multi-author volume, belonging to the European Conceptual History publishing project. The keynote speakers will be Javier Fernández-Sebastián (University of the Basque Country), Michael Freeden (University of Oxford) and Pauli Kettunen (University of Helsinki).

We encourage submission of proposals dealing with the seminar main theme. Although specific attention will be paid to liberalism and European welfare states, as well as to liberalism’s civilizational dimension, the seminar will consider other relevant aspects in the comparative study of liberalism as rendered, for example, by historical research, historiographical studies or theoretical discussions.

Structure, deadlines and practicalities

Panels will be arranged accordingly, being the initial estimate of up to four panels. Lecture sessions (40 minutes + 30-minute debate) will then alternate with panels (three paper givers per session, up to 20-minute presentations + 30-minute debates)

Please send your title and 150-word abstract to the convenors (, and ) by 24 February 2012.

To prepare the sessions debates, enlarged abstracts/outlines/papers of up to 1500 words should be sent by 15 May 2012.

A seminar fee of 50 euros, to be paid upon registration at the venue, will complement administrative and social events costs. Convenors will assist in matters of trip and accommodation, and information on practicalities will be posted in the coming months. Funding applications have been submitted to help cover part of the budget but, given the current shortages of research funds, participants are assumed to cover their own expenses.

Organizers & Sponsors

Concepta, International Research School in Conceptual History and Political Thought
The Doctoral Programme in History, Area Studies and Archeology, Institute of History and Civilization, University of Southern Denmark, Odense (
Nordwel, Nordic Centre of Excellence, University of Helsinki (
Research Group Intellectual History of Modern Politics: Languages, Concepts and Discourses (Basque Government Research Plan, IT-384-07) (
University of Málaga
The Civic Constellation Project (Spanish R+D National Plan, FFI2011-23388)


Jussi Kurunmäki (Stockholm University), Jeppe Nevers (University of Southern Denmark, Odense) and José María Rosales (University of Málaga)