Call for Papers

The theme for the 9th Nordic-Baltic ISCAR 2022 conference is “TO­WARDS IN­CLUS­IVE AND JUST SO­CI­ET­IES: A DIA­LOGUE WITH, WITHIN AND BEYOND CHAT”. In the spirit of our theme, we cordially invite scholars to contribute with their topical research and to join us in discussing what future directions our scholarly work offers for fostering more inclusive, equal and sustainable communities and societies globally for all. 

The CHAT community has a strong tradition of studying various forms of activity in their diversity, whether it be learning and play in early childhood, school, education and learning at various levels, youth activism,everyday life, as well as working life and organizational learning processes. Furthermore, CHAT research, by definition and practice, is characterized by multidisciplinarity and communication between scholars from a wide range of disciplines, such as psychology, education, philosophy, history, sociology, linguistics, anthropology, research on workplace practices, queer and gender studies, computer science, information systems, knowledge management, clinical neuropsychology as well as rehabilitation, occupational therapy, criminology, and social work.

We welcome contributions relating to our main conference theme from these and other disciplines. We also welcome other relevant contributions which focus on CHAT’s historical roots, modern applications and future perspectives.

Theory & Concepts

  • Learning and Development
  • Agency, Subjectivity and Identity
  • Contradictions, Crises and Transformations
  • Play and Imagination
  • Mediation, objects and instruments 
  • Activism and Utopias


  • Interventionist research approaches and their roots
  • Formative intervention methods, e.g. the Change Laboratory
  • Unit of analysis: historicity, context, and levels of analytic scale
  • Multi- and trans-methodologies: Issues, challenges, techniques and technologies
  • Changing practices, relations and communities 

Changing practices, relations and communities

  • Children’s everyday lives in and across diverse contexts
  • Art, artistry and contemporary lives
  • Changing and new forms of work
  • Higher education and academic work
  • The public sector, including health care, social services and urban planning 
  • Social movements and community-based research
  • Leisure activities and self-improvement activities
  • Home, family and everyday life
  • Queer communities and queer life
  • Digital spaces and communities
  • Human and other-than-human relationships

Emerging trends and future directions 

  • Theoretical and methodological explorations
  • Emerging concepts 
  • Tensions, extensions, and new formulations in Cultural-historical and Activity Research (CHAT)
  • Constructive dialogue with other theoretical and methodological approaches 

Single paper: Paper sessions are oral presentations, followed by a discussion with the audience and other presenters in the session. Single papers can focus on theoretical, empirical or methodological issues or provide a review of existing research on a particular topic.

Symposium: A symposium contains multiple research papers on one particular topic or theme. They are organized by the participants before submission to provide a coherent set of papers for discussion. Symposium sessions are directed by a chair, involving three to four presenters and one discussant. The discussant will both facilitate the discussion and provide an overview of the potential contribution and significance of the papers. The symposium will be reviewed as a whole. Each contributing paper will be also reviewed independently. 

Poster: A poster offers researchers a chance to present their work in a visual format, accompanied by a short oral presentation. Poster presenters should be ready to make a brief presentation of their research and have discussions with the audience and answer questions. Early stage research is preferably more suitable for the poster sessions.

Roundtable: Roundtable sessions provide an opportunity for a more interactive and exploratory presentation of research issues and their discussion. This makes a roundtable session well suited for work in progress or early stage research. In the session, each presenting author will have an opportunity to share their research and emerging issues, and invite the participants to, for example, discuss their data or help with possible problems. The session will be hosted by a chair. 

Debate session: a debate session brings together researchers for critical discussion of a specific issue, hot topic or a controversial claim from multiple perspectives. Like symposiums, debate sessions are organized by the participants. In contrast to symposiums, in a debate session grounding arguments are presented by each contributor shortly (max. three minutes) at the beginning of the session. After this, the participants will engage with the arguments and debate on the topic. The session will be hosted by a chair. 

Workshop, Demonstration or Data session: Workshops familiarize participants with a new aspect of research or teaching practice and facilitate discussion of the topic. The main idea of a workshop is to provide the participants with a personal experience of a particular research / teaching aspect. Any presentations will be brief. Demonstrations allow presenters to display useful research, data collection, analysis of the teaching tool or method. In a data session, presenters share their data with the participants with the idea of joint, in vivo analysis and brainstorming around it and possible interpretations of the data.

Innovative session: We also want to encourage our participants to consider submitting their ideas and suggestions for innovative, creative, radically new and experimental session formats. These could include quickfire sessions in which participants brainstorm ideas for research projects, a collaborative work session between invited practitioners, activists, artists and politicians or coffee and idea pitching. Sessions involving artistic methods and contributions are also welcome.

Each contribution, apart from Workshop, Demonstration or Data session or Innovative sessions, will be reviewed with the following criteria: 

  • Relevance for the theme or sub-themes of the conference.
  • Coherence of theoretical and/or conceptual framework.
  • Quality of research method and design, if applicable.
  • Clarity of contribution and argumentation
  • Significance for theory, practice and policy. 
  • Overall quality and scholarly originality.

Each contribution will be reviewed by two reviewers and the process will be double blind. Symposiums will be reviewed as a whole. Each individual symposium contribution will also be reviewed separately and needs to get accepted for the symposium to be accepted as a whole.

In the review of workshops, demonstrations, data and innovative sessions, the main criteria will be novelty, the ways in which the session encourages new and creative ways of presenting and discussing research, as well as how the session fits with the main theme of the conference. 

Indications of possible plagiarism or breach of conventional ethical norms (WHO Research Ethic committee, AERA Code of Ethics, Finnish National Board of Research Integrity) by the author(s) of the submitted abstract manuscript, will be reported to the scientific committee of the conference.

(preliminary information, subject to change)

Nordic-Baltic ISCAR 2022 will handle all submissions online via the Oxford Abstracts submission system. The submission system will open from 9  August 2021 and close on 10 October 2021 (23:59 Eastern European Time, UTC +2 hours). No late submission will be accepted. 

All submissions must include a title, an abstract and a paper/text. Submitters need to prepare their submissions according to the following word limits: 

Title: 20 words or fewer
Abstract: 150 words or fewer
Extended abstract: 1000 words or fewer, including references. Paper must not contain any author identification. Any tables, figures of images should be added to the end of the document. 

Submission will be removed from consideration if the above limits are exceeded.

Each participant can submit up to two proposals.

For symposiums, the organizers need a summary and 3-4 submissions, each submitted individually, including the summary. Both the summary and the individual submission need to follow the word limits above. The organizer needs also to indicate the chair of the symposium and a discussant. 

In order to submit the symposium:

  1. The organizers should start by creating the symposium in the Oxford Abstract system.  
  2. The organizer should invite each individual submission contributor via email to attach their contribution as part of the symposium. This way each contribution will be part of the right symposium.
  3. Individual contributions are submitted and connected via the Oxford Abstract system

For further assistance, please follow the Oxford Abstract instructions on how to create and submit your symposium here.