Panel Discussion: Isolation and Solitude in Academic Work

Finnish Society for Science and Technology Studies is organizing a panel discussion on Tuesday March 9th, 2021 at 2:15–3:45pm on the topic of Isolation and Solitude in Academic Work. The panel discussion is organized via Zoom and it is intended especially for early-career researchers in the field of science, technology, and society (STS), but we welcome anyone interested in the topic.

Experiences of isolation and solitude are relevant during the COVID-19 pandemic, because all aspects of academic work are conducted in virtual environments, for example, teaching, learning, mentoring, teamwork, collaboration, and university leadership and management. This transformation of academic work has resulted in varying challenges relating to work and family life balance, data collection, international careers, sense of community and togetherness, and mental and physical health.

At the same time, even without the pandemic, isolation and solitude are common experiences in academia as many conduct independent research, struggle to find their place and academic identity, and lack meaningful networks. Moreover, especially in the social sciences and the humanities, everyday work tasks related to thinking and writing demand focus and solitude. Yet, during the pandemic, it seems that experiences of isolation and solitude have intensified and that we have become more aware of them.

We welcome you to ponder, discuss, and find ways to understand the topic in the context of COVID-19 and beyond with an interesting set of speakers, see below, who approach Isolation and Solitude in Academic Work from different perspectives and experiences.

Please sign up to the event by Tuesday March 2nd, 2021 here:

Panel speakers:

Professor Norma Daykin 

Faculty of Information Technology and Communication Sciences, Tampere University

Associate Professor Mianna Meskus

Faculty of Social Sciences, Tampere University

Associate Professor Thomas Olsson

Faculty of Information Technology and Communication Sciences, Tampere University

Senior Lecturer Hanna Ylöstalo

Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Turku

Panel discussion moderator:

Associate Professor Elina Mäkinen

Faculty of Management and Business, Tampere University

Chair of Finnish Society for Science and Technology Studies