Annual Postgraduate Conference 2022

Date 19/02/2022
Place University College Cork
Price Conference Fees


This annual conference provides a forum for student researchers to present their work to academic peers and receive feedback, engage in critical discussions with other postgrads and academics, develop research and presentation skills, and help to build a broad and inclusive community of early career academics in Ireland and farther afield. We invite both presentations and posters, and although it’ll be face-to-face this time, we will have virtual presentation options if needed


The theme of the SAI Postgraduate 2022 Conference is ‘Imagining New Realities’. It aims to embody the period of rapid change, questioning, contestation, and reform we are in, while also inviting the sociological imagination to revisit the past, capture the present, and picture the future.

The theme is apt as during the pandemic the world simultaneously came to a standstill and accelerated. We find ourselves in an era of increased uncertainty, questioning, and adapting on individual, societal, national, and global levels, all while resistance brewed and science fought for its place among multiple alternative realities grappling to understand this new world. The question of what truly is ‘essential’ has opened our eyes to new ways of seeing the way our worlds are structured, giving way to new questions about life in these so-called ‘new realities’ and conditions of the ‘new normal’.

Abstract Submission

We welcome papers addressing ‘New Realities’ in terms of accelerated change, efforts to redefine entrenched representations and structures, innovations, efforts to revisit and re-evaluate the past, and sociological efforts to imagine the future. We also welcome papers on he new reality of how research is conducted, reflecting how many students had to adapt their methods, put their work on hold, or even change it altogether in times of global crises. Our conference theme is open to many interpretations, and we welcome approaches that rely on creative, cultural, conceptual, corporeal, qualitative, quantitative, theoretical, or historical perspectives.

Some suggested themes may include, but are not limited to:

  • Innovation and adaption
  • Representation, identity and status
  • Challenging of hegemony
  • Liminality, precarity, and the void
  • Activism and social movements
  • The significance of voices: old, new, silenced, or loud
  • The sociological imagination
  • Duality and polarity
  • Governance and governmentality
  • Methodological challenges and innovative solutions

Our conference image is ‘A New Reality’ by Dawid Planeta. It speaks to the moment of recognition when a New Reality comes into view. It is not immediately clear what we are witnessing, with a mix of familiar, unfamiliar, things of this world and otherworldliness, complex patterns, multiple
arrangements, enchantment, re-enchantment, and the uncanny.

Imagining new realities shows us a new ways of co-existing amidst diversity; order amongst the chaos, collective amongst the alien. As sociologists, it is our role to not only look up and observe these new realities passively, but to face the intersubjective task of making sense, interpreting, and challenging what we see. Like the two souls looking up, do you see the unnatural illumination, or do you wonder about the shadowed void it creates beyond its light? Do you question where it came from, or its purpose? Does it unsettle, or inspire?

We invite your sociological imagination, and we challenge you to share your insights in the New Realities around us.

See more of Dawid Planeta ‘s work on his Instragram at:

Abstracts should be no more than 200 words. Please include the full title and full list of authors, and up to four keywords with your submission.

Deadline: 3 December, 2021

Please send you abstract or poster submissions, as well as any questions, to the SAI Postgraduate representative Melissa Meyer at:

*Please include name, affiliation, contact details, title and 200 word description of paper.