The day will include conference papers from current researchers, workshops, roundtable discussion and a keynote presentation from Robin Mackay of Urbanomic.  Further details below:

9.00-9.30am Registration, Tea and Coffee, Treehouse

9.30-9.35am Welcome, Bowland Auditorium

9.35am Panel 1: Creating and Communicating, Bowland Auditorium

Chair: Nicola Pennill, University of Sheffield
Xiang Ren, “Interdisciplinary Architecture: Public Engagement and Research in Practice”
Dr Martin Scheuregger, “Interdisciplinarity and Public Engagement: A Contemporary Music Case Study”

10.15am  Panel 2: Frameworks of Thinking, Bowland Auditorium

Chair: Catherine Evans, University of Sheffield
Mary Loveday Edwards, “Metaphor as Design/Research Technique”
Dr Suki Finn, “Expert Disagreement and the Interdisciplinarity of Logic”
Harrie Neal, “Post-disciplinarity in practice: my experience so far”

11.20-11.40am Tea and Coffee, Treehouse

11.40am  Panel 3: Exploring New Frontiers, Bowland Auditorium

Chair: Ryan Kirkbride, University of Leeds
Tom Rusbridge, “‘Leatherology’: Interdisciplinarity in Early Modern History”
Hannah Jeans, “Approaching Literary Studies from a Historical Perspective”
Robert Grout, “History and Psychology: Non-Overlapping Magisteria?”

12.40-1.30pm   Lunch, Treehouse

1.30pm Roundtable, Bowland Auditorium

   Chair: Dr Mark Jenner, University of York
Joanne Armitage, University of Leeds
Dr Leo Caves, University of York
Dr Matthew Cheeseman, University of Sheffield
Prof. Nicola Dibben, University of Sheffield

2.45pm, 3.30pm Workshops, Treehouse and BS/008

Sarah Campbell, Editorial Director, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
      Sue Carver, Head of Histories, Cultures and Heritage, AHRC

4.10-4.30pm Tea and Coffee, Treehouse

4.30pm Keynote Presentation

Robin Mackay, Director, Urbanomic
“Approaching the Contemporary Object”

5.30pm Wine Reception, Treehouse

Book clinics
Sarah Campbell, Editorial Director at Rowman & Littlefield Publishers is running book proposal clinic appointments throughout the day, offering one-on-one publisher feedback on a draft book proposal. Slots are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To express your interest and book a slot, please email us at

Keynote presentation

4.30 - 5.30 pm, Bowland Auditorium, The Humanities Research Centre, Berrick Saul Building, York University, Y010 5DD.

Robin MackayApproaching the Contemporary Object


Not only do the most crucial objects of study in contemporary life stubbornly refuse to fall under one discipline or another; not only do they demand that the theoretical, speculative, and historical approaches of the humanities cross over with the empirical and systematic investigations of the sciences: their very status as ‘objects’ is in itself problematic. Any decision to define and address them from a single disciplinary perspective, or as an object of the ‘humanities’ as such, is heavy with both epistemological and political consequences. The question of interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary methodology is therefore all-important; but it is not simply a question of finding ways of ‘working together’, but also involves a search for a new model of the object in general, beyond the division of labour implied by disciplinarity.

Through a discussion of models that have emerged in the process of editing the transdisciplinary journal Collapse and through working with contemporary artists who also seek to address these problematic objects, I want to propose some ways of thinking about the contemporary, and the different contributions that philosophy, art, and science can make as we try—tentatively, experimentally—to approach it.