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Annual Conference

IVSA Annual Conference

IVSA Conference AttendeesIVSA Members in Santorini, Greece (2003)The first IVSA International Conference took place in 1983. Each year since then, IVSA members have been gathering in a different global location to share their work in visual sociology, visual studies, visual ethnography, documentary film and photography, public art, arts-based research, and visual literacy and education. The annual conference provides a unique and exciting opportunity for visual producers and scholars from around the world to connect with those who share their passion for visual research and methods. The annual conference also helps promote the growth and acceptance of visual-based research, production, and education efforts across geographical borders and academic disciplines.

This year's conference:

2016 IVSA Conference || Visualizing Sustainability: Imagined Futures | June 22-24 | Lillehammer, Norway

Past conference locations and themes include:

  • 2013 England | "The Public Image" - July 8-10 - Goldsmiths, London

  • 2012 United States | “Visualizing the City” – St. Francis College, Brooklyn

  • 2011 Canada | “Visual Research as a Collaborative and Participatory Practice” – University of British Columbia, Vancouver

  • 2010 Italy | “Thinking, Doing, and Publishing Visual Research: The State of the Field?”– University of Bologna

  • 2009 England | “Appreciating the Views: How We're Looking at the Social and Visual Landscape” – University of Cumbria

  • 2008 Argentina | “Space, Time and Image” – FLACSO, Buenos Aires

  • 2007 United States | “Public Views of the Private; Private Views of the Public”– New York University

  • 2006 Italy | “The City in Its Multiple Facets: How Urban Spaces are Shaped by Human Action and at the Same Time Shape Our Lives” – University of Urbino

  • 2005 Ireland | “Re-Viewing Bodies: Embodiment, Process and Change”– Trinity College, Dublin

  • 2004 United States | “The Thought of the Eye” – Art Institute of San Francisco

  • 2003 Greece | “Visualizing Community, State and Nation: Images of Power and Social Bond” – Panteion University, Santorini  


If you are a visual scholar or producer, and you are interested in meeting others like you, sharing your visual work, and promoting visual studies, we encourage you to become a member of IVSA and join us at our annual conference. We’d love to see you there!

2015 IVSA Conference

IVSA 2015 Annual Conference

WHAT YOU SEE IS WHAT YOU GET: Old and New Ways of Seeing Society


Welcome IVSA Members and guests.

The International Visual Sociology Association 2015 Annual Conference will take place June 25-27, 2015 at the Cultural Foundation of Tinos, located in the city of Chora of Tinos island, Greece. The Conference will be hosted by the Department of Communication, Media and Culture – Panteion University. 

Theme: What You See Is What You Get: Old and New Ways of Seeing Society

The theme “What You See Is What You Get: Old and New Ways of Seeing Society”  stands for the idea of innovation gone obsolete: the computer interface is not just a new way of seeing, but also a signifier of the visual turn at large. The much-advertised feature of visually compelling software is now a commonplace feature gone unnoticed – unseen.

At the crossroads between ways of seeing, tradition and innovation are both revered by visual researchers. Yet, today’s innovation may prove next week’s old news. Umberto Eco’s aphorism about the “theory of next Thursday” is the story of modern (and postmodern) visuality, as it flees between forms. New visual forms prove to be the test bed for methodologies. While subjects like mobile visual cultures, intermediated visualities, computer vision, etc. demand scientific attention, visual researchers strive to respond renovating their methodologies.


The 2015 International Visual Sociology Association conference abstract submission window is now closed.

Conference program: Final Program - IVSA 2015 Conference.pdf

  • For any information contact  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Conference website


2016 IVSA Conference

IVSA 2016 Annual Conference

Visualizing Sustainability: IMAGINED FUTURES

June 22-24, 2016 in the town of Lillehammer, Norway. The Conference will be hosted by the Faculty of Social Science at Lillehammer University College. 

The International Visual Sociology Association (IVSA) will hold its next annual conference in Norway. The conference will take place during the bright midsummer time in the city of Lillehammer.

During the days of June 22 - 24, visual scholars and artists from around the world will gather to share their research and network in paper sessions, workshops, film sessions, exhibitions and social events.

The theme for this conference will be “Visualizing Sustainability: Imagined Futures.” The conference will take place at Lillehammer University College. Lillehammer is less than two hours by train from Oslo International Airport with direct flights from many cities in and outside Europe.

For this year’s event we ask the visual sociology community and related disciplines to problematize and challenge the concept of environmental sustainability. How can we visualize what sustainability is and what it is not; what are its signs and characteristics? We ask you to use your visual imagination to explore the issues related to sustainability on a local and a global scale.

As is our practice in all IVSA conferences we also welcome generalist submissions dealing with visual methods, theories, and other central issues in visual sociology, as well as visual analyses of society and culture.


Please see the CONFERENCE SUMMARY SHEET for additional details about the conference and also a draft of the conference program. 

Lillehammer in Summer

 The IVSA 2016 conference is sponsored by The Research Council of Norway.

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Call for Papers - 2016 IVSA Conference


IVSA 2016

Visualizing Sustainability. Imagined Futures.

22-24  June,  Lillehammer University College, Norway


The International Visual Sociology Association invites abstracts for its 34th annual meeting, to be held at Lillehammer University College, Norway, June 22-24, 2016. Abstracts may address general topics relating to visual methods, theories, and other aspects central to visual sociology and the visual analysis of society and culture, as well as the general theme of the conference, “Visualizing Sustainability. Imagined Futures.” 

We encourage submissions from those interested in the visual research and thinking from sociology and related social sciences; communications and media; cultural studies; film and photographic studies; photojournalism and related practices. We encourage those unfamiliar with visual methods and analysis to visually innovate and experiment in their respective substantive specializations. The IVSA is rooted in the discipline of sociology but welcomes participation from a wide range of disciplines.

Preference will be given to presentations that use visual material (images or video).

Specific themes may include but not be limited to the following:

-        visual methods in the study of sustainability

-        the visual study of nature and human presence in the world

-        the visual analysis of environmental problems and crises

-        the visual dimension of social movements for human sustainability

-        the visual imagination of a sustainable ecological world

Please note: the list above is suggestive and not exhaustive. As the first conference to address this important theme, we expect a wide range of creative approaches, ideas and presentations, including papers with images, videos, photo essays, multi-media, fine arts and other modes of visual expression.

Deadline for symposia is 22nd of January 2016 and February 15th for papers, posters and films. The deadline for workshop proposals is February 22. Please submit here: If your proposal is accepted you will be invited to join the IVSA in order to participate in the conference. Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Guidelines for proposals for paper sessions, symposia, posters and film sessions.

An IVSA abstract proposal for presentation have a maximum of 250 words, in addition to title, author(s) and contact information.

Paper Sessions

Paper sessions consist of a presentation and a discussion of 4-5 papers, about 20 minutes each including discussion. The session is guided by a chair or discussant. A conference attendee will be limited to present no more than one paper at the IVSA conference.

The deadline for abstract proposals is February 15.


A symposium session builds on a theme and is proposed and planned by a symposium organizer. The papers focus on a common theme. A symposium has a chair (often the organizer) and one or more discussants, who have read the papers in advance. A symposia may run over more than one session. The symposium organizer will decide how the symposium is to be organized and the time allotment for each presentation. The organizer of the symposium submits a proposal (as organizer’s text) with a plan for the symposium including:

1. The title of the symposium,
2. An abstract describing the entire symposium,
3. The names of the contributors and titles of their presentations

NOTICE: Each presenter submits the abstract separately (as symposium presenter) connected to the symposium. They do this after the organizer has submitted the symposia proposal and follow the similar requirements as an abstract to a paper session.

The deadline for symposia organizers is 22nd of January, and for the symposia presenters the deadline is February 1.

Poster Sessions

Poster sessions offer a more informal opportunity to present a project visually rather than orally by means of one poster. During poster sessions, participants peruse poster stations, a format maximizing interaction between participants and presenters. The abstract proposal describes the focus of the poster. Posters should be prepared for the Conference in A1/portrait (upright 841 x 594 mm). Posters may also be presented with other medias in the dedicated area for posters (the presenters should then bring all needed tools for presenting). The deadline for poster submissions is February 15.

Film sessions

Film sessions are organized similar to paper sessions. Each presenter submits an abstract by February 15. Those accepted will send a link to the film-material by April 1st. Information of film format and how to hand in will be announced.


The workshops will be held during the conference (June 22-24). A workshop could be one or several days, and one or several session slots, and it will be included in the session program running parallell with the paper sessions.

The deadline for workshop abstracts is February 22. In addition to content and aims, the abstracts should include information about technical requirements for the organizers and for the participants, preferred number of participants in the workshop and time required. 

The person running the workshop should organize the registration of participants, and the number should be a minimum of 5.

The deadline for workshop proposals is February 22.

For registration, please submit an abstract through the IVSA 2016 abstract submission system.

Contact:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

IVSA 2016 Annual Conference

Visualizing Sustainability: IMAGINED FUTURES

June 22-24, 2016 in the town of Lillehammer, Norway. The Conference will be hosted by the Faculty of Social Science at Lillehammer University College. 

Conference venue

The IVSA conference in 2016 will be held in Lillehammer, Norway at Lillehammer University College, 5 km outside the city center.

Conference dates
June 22. – 24. The conference starts at 9 AM on the 22nd and ends 3.30 PM on the 24th.

Travel to Lillehammer
Lillehammer is situated 1 hours 45 minutes north of Oslo Airport by train. Trains depart 59 minutes past every hour from Oslo International Airport (Gardemoen - OSL) to Lillehammer.

Most of the hotels will be within walking distance from the train station. You may buy your train ticket on, on the railwaystation at the airport or on the train (extra charge of NOK 20).

Rooms have been reserved for the participants at the IVSA conference in central Lillehammer. There will be transportation between the hotels and the conference venue. Beneath you can find several partner hotels for the IVSA conference. When you register for the conference, no accommodation is included. You book your accommodation easiest by pressing the link to the hotel giving them information about:
* Arrival and departure date
* Room size (single, double or apartment)
* Full name
Remember to refer to the hotels booking code.

All hotel prices are per person and includes breakfast. Please make your hotel reservation no later than April 26.


Birkebeineren Hotel & Aparments
(linkto: )

Apartment – 2 persons             NOK 770
Apartment – 3 persons             NOK 690
Apartment – 4 persons             NOK 575

Booking reference: 152625 HIL IVSA
Booking: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Clarion Collection Hotel Hammer
(linkto: )

Single room NOK 1260*
Double room         NOK 730*

Booking reference: 120494
Booking: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

*also includes a light evening meal


Radisson Blu Lillehammer Hotel 


Single room          NOK 995
Double room        NOK 795

Booking reference: 281346

Booking: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Scandic Victoria Hotel
(linkto: )

Single room NOK 840
Double room         NOK 540

Booking reference: HOG210616
Booking: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lillehammer Stasjonen Hostel

Rooms incl. breakfast starting at NOK 340

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


General tourist information
Lillehammer has a lot to offer its visitors in the summertime. Lillehammer is also a great starting point to trips to the mountains or to the fjords on the West Coast. For more information on the Lillehammer region:
For tourist information on Norway, see