Chemical Weather and Chemical Climate

Chemical Weather and Chemical Climate:
Body, Place, Planet in Historical Perspective

Gordon Cain Conference on the History of Atmospheric Chemistry
Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, PA
March 31-April 1, 2011

Call for Papers:

The atmosphere is as intimate and personal as a breath of air; it also manifests in particular ways in particular locales and as global phenomena with international social, political, and economic dimensions. The phrase “chemical weather” invokes the temporal and spatial variability and complexity of atmospheric chemical processes. Air quality forecasts indicating expected levels of pollutants such as smog, ozone, pollen, and suspended particulate matter are one example of this; etiological studies of air pollution and health are another; military and security concerns over poison gas and aerosol attacks represent yet a third area of focus. “Chemical climate” refers to large scale and long-term interactions also known as bio-geo-chemical cycles, their changes, and their social import.

The 2011 Gordon Cain Conference seeks papers and posters that present original research, examine historiographical issues, and/or pursue historical syntheses in the field of atmospheric chemistry (broadly defined). Special consideration will be given to contributions addressing issues of scale—for example lungs, locales, and trans-boundary issues—and exploring interdisciplinary perspectives involving literature, art, architecture, and related fields. Papers may also involve case studies of chemical industries, governance, regulation, and litigation. Presenters are encouraged to emphasize the social relevance of their research and to communicate the results of their research in forms accessible to the interested public.

The conference is planned for 30 participants, including approximately 12 paper writers and an equal number of commentators. Papers will be pre-circulated. At the conference, each paper will be introduced by a commentator and discussed with the author in a 45-minute session. Proposals for 90-minute thematic panels involving two or three presenters are also welcome. The first session is scheduled for early afternoon on Thursday, March 31. This will be followed by a keynote address and public reception where research posters will be on display. Paper sessions continue Friday, April 1, with the posters discussed mid-day and a final session ending by 6:00 pm. Participants, including selected poster presenters, will be asked to revise their contributions for possible publication.

Students and scholars from all nations and at all stages of their careers are encouraged to apply. Partial support for travel, accommodation, and meals for selected participants will be provided by CHF.

Please send your paper or poster title, abstract of 250 words or less, and a 2-page c.v. to Professor James R. Fleming, STS Program, Colby College, Waterville, Maine 04358, USA, Email: at any time, but no later than the (slightly extended) deadline of Nov. 15, 2010.