Call for Papers: “Expertise and its tensions” – A Special issue of Science & Technology Studies.

Contemporary societies are permeated by, and depend on, various types of expertise. Expertise is also commonly contested in various domains, such as environment, health, medicine and economics. Debates on expertise commonly involve struggles over propositional power as well as epistemic authority. These struggles might be about relations between lay and expert knowledges, but they might also emerge betwixt scientific experts, or among other forms of expertise and ways of knowing. Furthermore, inter- or multidisciplinary endeavors create tensions as scientific experts from various fields need to fit together their approaches.

Articles can relate to any aspect of expertise, targeting, for example, to any of the three pre-established topics groups: 1) expansion of expertise in the public domain, 2) multidisciplinary expertise and its tensions, 3) experts, politics and policy.

We welcome but do not restrict the scope of articles, on following topics:

  • Emergence of multiple expertise around distinct phenomena
  • Multidisciplinary expertise and tacit knowledge
  • Expertise and wicked problems
  • Expertise, law and regulation
  • Socio-materiality of expertise
  • The place of expertise in social services
  • Trust in science and/or think tanks
  • Science-policy dynamics
  • Triple helix
  • Expansion of expertise in the public domain
  • Social media  and expertise
  • Personal values, stances, and expert knowledge
  • Expertise of risk
  • Experience based expertise
  • Politically and economically motivated dissent in science
  • Public questioning of medical expertise
  • NGO’s as policy experts
  • Participatory expertise
  • Contingency of the boundaries of public expertise
  • How information systems and databases affect medical expertise
  • Big data and expertise
  • Tensions in the multi-disciplinary expertise
  • The interfaces of expertise
  • Semantic difference and loss of context in multidisciplinary scientific work
  • Emotional tensions in multi-, inter-, and trans-disciplinary interaction
  • Multiple ontologies and professional languages
  • Scientific misconduct
  • Total quality management of expertise
  • The efficiency of expertise

The guest-editors of this special issue of Science and Technology Studies are: Steven Yearley, Maria Åkerman, Otto Auranen, Harley Bergroth, Ismo Kantola, Sampsa Saikkonen, Jaakko Taipale.

Papers to be submitted should not be published or under review elsewhere. All submissions will be peer-reviewed according to Science & Technology Studies guidelines and procedures. For further manuscript guidelines, please see ‘manuscript submissions’ on Science & Technology Studies website (

Deadline for manuscript submissions is 15th of February 2017.

For further information, please contact Ismo Kantola.