21st Science Council of Asia (SCA) Conference

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Twentieth-First SCA Conference
March 15-17, 2022 New Delhi, India (Online)

Theme: Science, Technology & Social Science Research: Together for a Better World
Organized by: Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), Ministry of Education, Government of India, New Delhi, India
Conference Booklet: Click here for conference booklet [+}
Watch: YouTube [+]

The 21st Science Council of Asia (SCA) Conference is going to be held from March 15-17, 2022 in New Delhi, India. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conference will be organized in online mode only.

The last couple of decades have witnessed remarkable surge in the interest for multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary researches, having the best of science, technology and social science researchers working on themes of common and converging interests for the betterment of societies across the world. There is a realisation, greater than ever before, that science and technology are increasingly becoming part of day to day life and so, the society, its needs, aspirations and adaptability to the transformations brought about by developments in science & technology have acquired pivotal position while considering the outcome of shifts caused by science and technology.

Understanding the social implications of the newer applications of science and technology has become critical and seems to continue to be so, given the dynamics of social changes with developments in science and technology. The pervasive use of science and technology in decision-making processes such as consumption, production, use of such knowledge in medical sciences and even application of ICTs in addressing the complex situations that are encountered by people and governments have made it imperative to study science and technology and social science together for a better world. It is being recognised to growing extent that while science and technology studies need a more humane and social approach through the integration of social science theories, frameworks and understanding, whereas social science studies can gain objectivity and enrichment from greater orientation towards empirical and evidence-based researches in science and technology domains. These integrations are and can be mutually bolstering and can thus significantly contribute to expanding the knowledge frontiers to produce better societal outcomes. 

Historically, the roots of such a multidisciplinary area of research could be traced back to the classic study by Thomas Kuhn’s 1962 piece ‘The Structure of Scientific Revolutions’ where Kuhn examined how scientific knowledge and its technological applications could effectively be connected to the social developments built on law, politics, public policy, ethics, and culture. Since then there has been widespread interest in researches combining  multidisciplinary perspectives for holistic view on research problems. In the recent times, many universities in the world have designed and offered such courses which are based on multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary areas. 

The research has primarily been categorised in two groups –

1) understanding science and technology researches as social institutions, and

2) assessing and mapping the impacts of science and technology on society and various aspects of societal developments such as social structures and systems, environmental aspects, peace and other human dimensions.

However, recent developments and emerging contemporary challenges such as rise in new forms of information technology such as application of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, block chain technology and other such technological advancements, and also the risks posed by imminent threats such as climate change have brought new set of challenges for the both - science and technology as well as social science researches. It requires innovative methods and holistic approaches to understand such challenges and devise ways of addressing these challenges in meaningful ways. Obviously, these challenges cut across disciplinary boundaries and require systematic and holistic approaches.

The proposed conference offers the right platform for engaging young scientists from such a wide canvas to discuss, deliberate, debate and rise to such challenges in bringing out new knowledge and foster multidisciplinary researches for a better world.

The Science Council of Asia (SCA) is an international scientific organization founded in 2000 by Asian science academies and other national scientific organizations. SCA aims to provide scientists in all fields, including cultural and social as well as natural sciences and technology, with a collaborative platform for promoting scientific exchange and cooperation in Asia, and to develop and promote a holistic vision focusing on sustainable development and improvement in quality of life. At present, SCA is comprised of 31 academic organizations in Asia, and SCA Conference has been held annually since 2001.

The Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), New Delhi (India), established in the year 1969, is an autonomous body working under the aegis of Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Education, Government of India. It is the apex national nodal Council for promoting and funding social science research in India. The funding and promotional programmes of the ICSSR operate through the mechanism of institutional and individual grants. An all India network of 24 frontline Research Institutes and six regional centres is maintained and five recognized institutes are programmatically supported by the ICSSR. ICSSR is the single largest agency involved in the funding of social science research to the Universities, Colleges and research institutions in the country.

Main topics

  • Science, technology and public policy in larger social, historical and ethical contexts
  • Science, technology and society for SDGs
  • Socio-technological transformation and Future Earth: theories and applications
  • Socio-technological transitions and the key economic sectors
  • Social construct of scientific and technological developments
  • Role of science and technology and social science in the emerging research fields such as biomedical science, information science, and the natural sciences
  • Frameworks, approaches, methods for science, technology and social science studies
  • Social Science Paradigm with emerging Big data, Artificial Intelligence and Block-Chains