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International conference of GIS International College of Territorial Sciences

Founding Territorial Sciences

23-25 November 2011

The International College of Territorial Sciences organizes the international conference "Founding territorial sciences" (23-25 November 2011).

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Debate Paper

CIST’s aim is to investigate how the territory may be relevant in multidisciplinary issues such as:

  • Relationships between individual and collective levels (individual and collective mobility, identity issues, spatial practices and social fragmentation, individual and territorial policies...);
  • New standards and regulations generated by globalization (new role of the state and increasing number of standards producers; national regulations outplayed by the rise of local and transnational levels; common goods and governance through multi-stakeholder engagement...);
  • Temporalities and breaks in social, physical or biological events (vulnerability and risk; safety, durability and resilience; prevention policies and crisis management; long term planning in the face of accelerating social practices...).

Depending on how territorial sciences are considered, cross-fertilisation among disciplines will take different forms:

(I) As scientific knowledge. Here territorial sciences are conceived through the dialogue among several scientific disciplines trying to gain a minimum common understanding of the territorial dimension of their own objects. The concept of territory will be discussed in order to find its meanings and possible deviations from one discipline to another, and space will be taken into account through sufficiently comparable methods. In this case, territorial sciences will be approached as a methodology;

(II) As an emerging scientific discipline. In this case, concepts, laws and methods of analysis have to be defined. Researchers’ efforts should focus on the concept of territory itself rather than on major cognitive issues (individual-collective relationship etc.). More precisely, reflecting on such issues may provide an opportunity to progress toward a better knowledge of the territory as a scientific object.

The conference will have to address this alternative through the following proposed themes:

  • defining territorial sciences;
  • territorial information;
  • mobilities, identities and territories;
  • conflicts, compromises and territorial governance; risks and territories; territories and biodiversity;
  • agriculture, territories and sustainable development;
  • territories and health.

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Updated on : 23 February 2012


Géographie-cités 2011, All rights reserved