11th UC Workshop — 9-10 May 2022

Institutions and anticipatory knowledge: Crisis, anomie and everyday life

9-10 May 2022, University of Warsaw Library, Warsaw

Format: Face-to-face, if circumstances allow. Otherwise, hybrid or virtual.

Deadline: short abstracts to be sent by 12 December 2021 (a.mica[at]uw.edu.pl)


Due to the global pandemic situation and international travel restrictions, we decided to cancel the 2021 workshop and meet F2F in 2022!


Call for Papers

Prediction, projection, preparation and hope are among the essential processes of contemporary life. These anticipatory mechanisms are new forms of knowledge that help reduce uncertainty, coordinate social action and intervention, as well as establish the future we are heading at currently.

What role do institutions play in the emergence and maintenance of anticipation practices? Institutions and organizations reproduce anticipatory forms while in the same time being contingent upon these. They provide the basis for the habitual routine and everyday life which is to a great extent about projection and anticipation. Institutions such as family, education, sport, regulation, food provision have an amazing power to establish routine in the present that also entails imaginary of the future. The institutions navigate the everyday life, which translates into clever management of expectations and hopes of a better future. In addition, the anticipatory power of institutions also comes out in the context of contemporary crises and unexpected events. As recent humanitarian, economic and public health emergencies have shown on a global  level, such disruptions trigger institutions and organizations to (re)establish what is the new future, what is the plan and what actors have to do in response to such events. Such redefinition of the situation allowing to introduce and coordinate a new normalcy.

The importance of anticipatory forms of knowledge was revealed in the context triggered by COVID-19 all too well. The global public health emergency has shown in this respect at least two things. The preoccupation with preparation for emergencies as fundamental in the contemporary world, on the one hand. The impossibility of full prediction, anticipation and preparedness on the other hand. In times of anticipatory anomie, such as COVID-19, institutions and organizations are not good anticipators and projectors anymore. Or they change their practices of anticipation (these are observably more fragmented, contingent, yet also dynamic because of the urgency to do something and be agentic).

The Workshop invites contributions dealing with such topics as:

  • Prediction, projection, anticipation processes
  • Forms of anticipatory knowledge: role and manifestation
  • Everyday life, crises and anomie
  • Anticipatory knowledge and power
  • Who can anticipate? What can be anticipated? How?
  • Anticipatory knowledge in the context of Institutional resistance to change when under strain (e.g., Fossil Fuel Institution and Climate Crisis).
  • Unanticipated and unexpected consequences of social action


See also Mini-workshop: Destructive Institutions and Anticipatory Knowledge (click here)