The ECN Committee 4 May 2020

Call for Papers:


The ECN’s first ever virtual conference

The Political Studies Association Early Career Network is delighted to announce a call for papers for our first ever virtual conference. This July 13th-24th, in place of our usual annual conference, we’ll host a series of online panels showcasing early career scholars’ research and providing a forum for discussion and feedback from experienced discussants.

In the current situation we couldn’t run our normal conference format this year . But that’s not the only reason we have decided to plan an online event this year. This situation is also an opportunity to think about how we can do things differently in our profession in the long term. Even after the current crisis is over, the climate emergency means academics will need to travel less while still sharing our research. 

Moreover, for some colleagues in-person was a format which never worked well. For scholars without funding, in person conferences can be unaffordable. For scholars with disabilities and chronic conditions, they can be exclusionary. For those from countries not preferred by the visa rules of host countries, they are simply inaccessible.

With all that in mind, we’re inviting early career scholars and ECN members to be part of something which we don’t see as a second-best replacement, but an exciting and necessary part of the future of academia and the study of politics.

How it will work

We will be hosting the virtual conference via the content delivery approach (which you can read more about here). Each panel will be hosted on it’s own page, with presenters providing either a video presentation (around 15 minutes) or poster alongside their papers. On each page will be comment sections where people will be able to give feedback or ask additional questions - and where presenters can respond!

Each panel will be assigned an seasoned discussant with expertise in the panel’s subject area. Providing participants with experienced feedback alongside those of your peers!

The panels will be created in response to the papers received and accepted. There is no specific overall theme of the conference, but we will place your research in a subject relevant panel.

We will provide ‘how to guides’ for all participants on how best to prepare their conference videos.

To Apply

Abstracts of 200 to 500 words of your research, alongside a short biographical note should be submitted by the 5th June to

Deadline extended to Monday, 8th June.

We welcome papers from Early Career Researchers (from first year PhD students to 3 years after PhD Completion) on any topic. While we welcome international submissions, the talks should either itself be in English. 

There is no fee with this conference, as this year we are offering all participants free entry

Still not convinced? Here’s some top reasons to get involved:

  • Networking opportunities outside your home institution
  • Feedback from experienced discussants in your subfield
  • Prizes to recognise top-quality papers (all too rare at other conferences!)
  • Completely free, for all!