The International Conference “Company Towns of the Bat'a Concern,” 24.-25. March 2011
Venue: Academic Conference Centre, Prague, Czech Republic
The business activities of the Bat'a concern have not been afforded due attention in the historiography of economic and social history, despite the fact that the concern’s individual companies, which operated in many countries around the world starting in the interwar period, undoubtedly ranked among the pioneering enterprises of a new industry based on mass production of consumer goods. At the end of the 1930s and based on experience acquired during the building of Zlin (i.e. the place where the company was founded and where its headquarters were located for many years) and other localities established in the interwar period in various countries around the world, the concern developed an explicit formulation of its own model of industrial business based on the broader concept of the “industrial town”.
The conference theme of “Company Towns of the Bat'a Concern” extends in its very formulation beyond the scope of economic and social history and business history, the perspectives of which the conference organisers emphasize in their own research. With this in mind, the conference also invites contributions by researchers in other fields and research specialisations, and thus aims to provide a stage for developing various perspectives and approaches to the topic. Contributions from the areas of architecture and urban planning, sociology, economics and cultural studies are especially welcome.
One of the conference’s objectives is to help create a discussion platform and develop necessary communication between Czech and foreign researchers working on the issue of Bat'a company towns or related topics. It is expected that the open nature of the conference will allow for a more objective assessment of our current understanding of the issue, not only from the point of view of relevant research fields and topics, but also from the perspective of reflection on and elaboration of the topic in individual countries. Based on this, it will be surely possible to formulate future research priorities in certain fields.
Possible topics may (but need not) address these areas:
- company towns of the Bat'a concern (or the Bat'a model of the “industrial town”) as viewed by various disciplines (history of architecture and urban planning, sociology, etc.)
- the present state of our understanding of the issue (individual countries / locations / fields of research)
- clarification of specific issues and problems connected with economic / social / production and operating conditions which led the concern to establish company towns at home and abroad
- the development of individual locations (in particular construction, social and economic development, how successful they were in establishing themselves in various environments, the present state of these locations)
- comparative contributions (comparisons with other industrial towns and projects, mutual comparisons of individual locations).
The main output of the conference will be a collective monograph composed of contributions selected on the basis of a review process
To apply for the conference:
Send your conference application (title of your contribution, 250-300 word abstract, and a brief academic CV) to email@example.com no later than 15 September 2010. All proposals for contributions will be subjected to a review process. Applicants will be notified of the results of the review process by 15 October 2010. (In the event that you will not be able to participate in the conference but are interested in having your contribution published in the collective monograph, please follow the same guidelines and state this fact in your correspondence with the organisers).
The official languages of the conference are Czech and English (contributions may be presented in a different language by prior arrangement with the organisers).
Institute of Philosophy of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Department of Social Sciences, VŠB – Technical University of Ostrava
Centre for Economic and Social History, Ostrava University
Representatives of the organisers:
PhDr. Martin Jemelka, PhD., VŠB – TU Ostrava
PhDr. Ondřej Ševeček, PhD., Institute of Philosophy of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Should you have questions, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The conference will be held within a Czech Science Foundation – GACR project entitled “Company Towns of the Baťa Concern” (registration number P410/10/1995) and with the support of the Institute of Philosophy of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic.
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