Conflict in European Time and Space

8th edition, 27-28 October 2022

“Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași, Romania

Institute of Interdisciplinary Research – Department of Social Sciences and Humanities

Defined as a clash between entities arising out of a difference in thought processes, attitudes, understanding, interests, requirements and even perceptions, conflict has as results heated arguments, physical abuses and definitely loss of peace and harmony. Etimologically, the Latin verb fligo, fligere, flixi, fictum (“strike”, “clash”, “collide”) and the noun flictus, -us (“strike”, “clash”, “collision”) generated a series of compounds whose semantic values reflect/nuance the basic meanings mentioned above, up to valences related to the moral or psychic area (affligo = “beat”, ”divert”). Widely used, especially in military language, were compounds with the preverb/preposition con-, co-/cum (the concrete meaning of the preverb/preposition expresses the idea of reunion): confligo, confligere, conflixi, conflictum (“strike”, “clash”, “fight”, “oppose”, “confront”, etc.), conflictus (“conflict”, “dispute”, “confrontation”), confligium (“collision”, “clash”), conflictatio (“conflict”, “dispute”; in medical term: “convulsion”), conflictatrix (“persecutor”). In the case of these last derivates, the idea of confrontation is dominant and it was transmitted through linguistic derivation both in Romance languages, but also in Germanic languages. Expressions such as: armed conflict, diplomatic conflict, labor conflict, intergenerational conflict, conflict of interest, conflict of ideas, etc., – all these involve actors situated either in irreducible and irreconcilable positions, or in a turning/critical point of their cooperation.

Starting from etymology, and with an eye to the war in Ukraine, our conference aims at exploring conflict in various historical, political, and social contexts, with a clear focus on the European time and space. We are interested especially in how conflict is translated in cultural frames and in the role played by the social sciences and humanities in raising, maintaining, and in preventing conflicts as well.

Culture is inextricable from conflict. For any complex system, internal and external conflicts make the system dynamic, requiring constant adjustment to changing conditions, continuously stirring further and better resolutions. However, there is a point where conflict turns from healthy to destructive (Welch, 2017). When differences surface in state politics, institutions, or communities, culture is always present, shaping perceptions, attitudes, behaviours, and outcomes. According to Jonathan Turner (2001), cultural conflict is a type of conflict that occurs when different social and cultural perceptions and values clash, “placing people at odds with one another”.

The conference aims to stimulate discussion and foster new connections between scholars and practitioners interested in the broader dynamics of conflict, dialogue, diplomacy, propaganda, as well as in the cultural representations and cultural responses to conflicts, and trauma and memory studies. How we deal with the continuous challenges determined by political, social, and cultural conflicts? How does conflict re-shape the entire landscape of the social sciences and humanities? Is an interdisciplinary perspective helpful in identifying, solving and preventing social and cultural conflicts? How do scholars from different fields work together to develop novel conceptual and methodological frameworks to provide extraordinary solution to problems affecting today’s world? As technology and digital become increasingly prevalent, will digital humanities become “a site of struggle” for the future of the academia?

We invite you to send an abstract of around 200 words to the following, until the 30th of September 2022. Individual papers as well as full panels are welcome. Please specify if you wish to participate on-line or in person. There is no participation fee for this PHSS edition.

The conference languages are Romanian and English.


Program PHSS 2021: On-Line Edition

Thursday, 28 October 2021

9.00-9.15 – Opening Session

Google Meet:

9.15-10.15 – Plenary Conference Interdisciplinarity Orientation as a Condition for Transdisciplinary Research – Nature and Nurture

Key-note speaker: Prof. dr. Adriana  Zaiț (UAIC, Romania)

Google Meet:

10.15-11.15 – Plenary Conference Dicționarul limbii române – o istorie a domeniilor întrepătrunse

Key-note speaker: C.S. I Gabriela Haja („A. Philippide” Institute of Romanian Philology, Romanian Academy)

Google Meet:

11.15-12.30 – Panel (1)

Google Meet:

12.30-13.45 – Panel (2)

Google Meet:

13.45-14.30 – Lunch-break 

14.30-16.30 – Panel (3)

Google Meet:

16.30-16.45 – Closing Remarks

Google Meet:

The extended program can be downloaded by accessing the following link:

Plenary Conference PHSS 2021: Dicționarul Limbii Române – o istorie a domeniilor întrepătrunse

CS I dr. Gabriela Haja

Institutul de Filologie Română „A. Philippide”, Iași, România

Thursday, 28 October, 10.15-11.15

Google Meet:

Dominată de specificul interdisciplinarității, lexicografia diacronică reprezintă unul dintre cele mai solicitante și provocatoare domenii de cercetare din cadrul umanioarelor. Prelegerea prezintă o istorie a lexicografiei privitoare la limba română, elaborată sub egida Academiei Române, din perspectiva interdisciplinarității. Voi porni de la Dicționarul limbii române semnat de Laurian și Maxim și voi parcurge etapele prin care a trecut magistrala lucrare pentru a ajunge la forma sa actuală, accesibilă on-line.

Plenary Conference PHSS 2021 Interdisciplinarity Orientation as a Condition for Transdisciplinary Research: Nature and Nurture

Key-note speaker: prof. dr. Adriana Zaiț

Faculty of Economics and Bussines Administration, UAIC, Romania

Thursday, 28 October 2021, 9.15-10.15

Google Meet:

“Transdisciplinarity has arrived yet university research is taking more time to realize and acknowledge such a relevant mega stroke of academic history. It may expose the irrelevance of conventional research which had worked through the ages as a discipline focused, individualized and confidential copyrighted script of proposals where researchers traversed problems like horses with blinders generating research findings which lacked a holistic equilibrium but greater passion and demonstrable insecurity from critiques.” (Singh, 2019).

We navigate our life through rough academic tribes’ territories and we waste energies in disciplinary divides and scientific disciplinary fights. Between agonism and antagonism, between closing fences to protect disciplinary standards and largely opening doors to multiple actors who deal with complex societal issues, interdisciplinarity might be the long waited solution for a new mode of research and knowledge production. The challenge of being or becoming interdisciplinary oriented remains, though. What makes us successful in interdisciplinary collaborations, which are the forces that foster our willingness to engage in interdisciplinary work? It is not clear yet what personal traits or attributes, or what social factors contribute to the creation of a good interdisciplinary orientation. What seems to become clearer lately, however, is that we do not need the nature or nurture divide in terms of developing interdisciplinarity – such an orientation has both characteristics: nature – as either a trait or a state of mind, and nurture – can be encouraged and developed through appropriate education and exposure. 

Interdisciplinarity as Aggregator: On-line 2021 PHSS Edition

Nowadays, ‘cross-disciplinarity’ practices, namely multidisciplinarityinterdisciplinarity, and transdisciplinarity (Barry & Born 2013, p. 8) are so widely deployed, offering responses to the multiple complexities of the modern age. While multidisciplinarity signals an accumulation of disciplinary perspectives to address a single object, with the anticipation that this approach will provide a richer analysis, adding insights that could not be generated from the application of a single discipline, interdisciplinarity comes to describe the ‘aggregation’ process of disciplinary perspectives with the intention of producing a ‘synthesis’ between them. Seen as an ‘inventive’ process, because its outcomes are innovative and deliberately reconstructive, transdiciplinarity overtly seeks to ‘transcend’ or ‘transform’ existing disciplinary structures.  (Thomson 2016, p. 323)

For the complexity of the modern world, interdisciplinarity depicts a mode of analytical thought that challenges the ubiquity and solidity of traditional disciplinarity. The interdisciplinary approach aims at trespassing the artificial borderlines between disciplines, representing a strict requirement in a world prone to constant change and cognitive accumulation in various fields of knowledge. Proactive focusing, blending, and linking of disciplinarity inputs foster a more holistic understanding of an issue, question, topic, theme or problem.

Based on bridge building between disciplines, or restructuring parts of disciplines to form a new whole, the purpose of interdisciplinary research is actually a pragmatic one: to solve a problem, to resolve an issue, to raise a new question, to explain a phenomenon, to create a new product, or to address a topic, all these being too complex for the methodological inventory of a single discipline and requiring thus an interdisciplinary approach (Klein 2010).

Transgressing certain epistemological and methodological barriers between various disciplines has resulted in a re-assessment of the research object, which is no longer regarded from the unique perspective of a single discipline, but rather placed under the magnifying glass of the interdisciplinary approach. The research object is studied from all angles, while the analysis is performed with methodological and epistemological tools belonging to several disciplines, aimed at rendering the research deeper and more extended.

PHSS conference highlights the need for more interdisciplinary debate in different fields of research and calls for more critical approaches to bring various topics to the forefront of research in humanities and social sciences.

We invite you to join us for the 7th edition of PHSS conference to explore interdisciplinarity and how interdisciplinary collaboration can help us to study complex social phenomena. We warmly invite proposals that focus on theoretical approaches, and also applied studies. Submitted presentations can include descriptions of accomplished work or work in progress.

Please send your title and a short abstract at

There is no participation fee for this year’s edition.

The conference languages are Romanian and English.

PHSS 2019: Conference Program

FRIDAY, 17 May 2019

9.00-9.30 – Registration and coffee
The Museum of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

9.30-10.30 – Opening Session
The Museum of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

10.30-12.00 – Panel (1)
The Museum of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

12.00-12.45 – The Museum of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași –Guided Tour

12.45-14.00 – Lunch-break at “Titu Maiorescu” Restaurant 14.00-16.00 – Panels (2-3)

16.00-18.00 – WORKSHOP
C505 Room, Building C, “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

Invited Speakers:

Prof. Angela Roman (“Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași”)

Neculai Viţelaru (Vice-president CNIPMMR)

Eugenia Niculina Dăscălescu (Regional Director BRD)Sorin Cociș (Regional Expert BRD)

Chair: Dr. Valentina Diana Rusu

16.15-18.15– Panels (4-5)
The Old Water Tower of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

18.30-19.00 – Book presentation: Exploring the Digital Turn
The Old Water Tower of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

19.00 – Cocktail
The Old Water Tower of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

SATURDAY, 18 May 2019

8.30-9.00 – Registration and coffee
The Old Water Tower of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

9.00-11.00 – Panels (6-7)
S5 Room, Ground Floor, Building A of “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iaşi

11.00-12.30 – Plenary Conference
Faculty of Letters, Room III.11, Building A, “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

From Felix Klein’s Erlangen Program to Dan Barbilian’s Secondary Game: The Philological Side

Keynote Speaker: Prof. BOGDAN SUCEAVĂ, California State University, Fullerton

12.30-13.00 – Closing Remarks

The full program is available here.

Workshop PHSS 2019: The Development of Entrepreneurship in Romania. The Role of Institutional Environment


Invited Speakers:

Prof. ANGELA ROMAN (“Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași”)

NECULAI VIŢELARU (Vice-president National Council of Private Small andMedium Enterprises in Romania)

EUGENIA NICULINA DĂSCĂLESCU (Regional Administrative Director BRD – Groupe Société Générale, North East Region)

SORIN COCIȘ (Regional Expert in European funds, government programs and partnerships BRD – Groupe Société Générale, Northeast Retail Region)

Time and location: Friday, 17 May, 16.00-18.00
C505 Room, Building C, “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

Language: Romanian

Entrepreneurship plays a major role in the economic development of a country or region and the quality of entrepreneurial activity has a significant impact on economic growth. Among the main pillars identified as supporters of entrepreneurship are: access to finance (facilitating entrepreneurs’ access to finance, in particular by developing a different lending model for entrepreneurship by banks, and developing new sources of innovative funding such as crowd- funding and microfinance); entrepreneurial culture (tolerance for risk and failure, preference for self-employment, culture of innovation and research); taxes and regulations (tax incentives, ease of business start-up, business-friendly legislation); education and training (entrepreneurship education in pre-university and university education, training for entrepreneurs, encouraging lifelong learning for entrepreneurs); support in all areas mentioned offered by specialized organizations, such as entrepreneurs’ associations and clubs, government agencies, business incubators, groups and business centres. According to studies in the field, access to finance is an area where entrepreneurs face the most difficulties, so improving access to finance is considered to be the most supportive measure of entrepreneurial development.

Through this workshop, we intend to create an interactive seminar in which to work together with the participants to identify the main obstacles that entrepreneurs face when they want to start up a new business or are in the course of their activity, in Romania. We will discuss the characteristics of the entrepreneurial environment in Romania, the number of procedures necessary for the establishment of a new business, the main ways of financing available to start-up entrepreneurs, but also to those older on the market, the role of the institutional environment in stimulating and encouraging potential entrepreneurs. The practical experience of the speakers will bring us face to face with the real situation in the business and institutional environment. Also, the participants in this seminar, being seen as potential entrepreneurs, will present their perceptions of the obstacles they identify in the entrepreneurial environment, as well as the factors that would stimulate them to open a business.

Organizers: Institute of Interdisciplinary Research, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Department, “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

This workshop was supported by a grant of the “Alexandru Ioan Cuza”University of Iasi, within the Research Grants program, Grant UAIC, code GI-UAIC-2017-02, entitled “Increasing the competitiveness of the Romanian economy by improving the quality of entrepreneurship”.

Plenary Conference PHSS 2019 — From Felix Klein’s ‘Erlangen Program’ to Dan Barbilian’s ‘Secondary Game’: The Philological Side


Keynote speaker: Prof. Bogdan Suceavă

California State University, Fullerton, USA

Time and location: Saturday, 18 May 2019, 11.00-12.30
Faculty of Letters, III.11 Room, Building A, “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iași

Language: Romanian

In 1872, the 23-year old Felix Klein published an important work, known today as the Erlangen Program, with lasting impact on the development of modern mathematics. Pursuing the Erlangen’s Program philosophy, a doctoral student of Gaston Darboux, Gheorghe Țițeica, introduced the first concepts of affine differential geometry in a series of papers published in 1907-1908. Furthermore, while running the ‘Mathematical Gazette’s problem solving competition, Țițeica discovered Dan Barbilian, a young brilliant and original mathematician who later had many substantive contributions in algebraic geometry and metric geometry. In poetry, Barbilian is remembered for his volume titled ‘Secondary Game’. In an essay wrote a decade after the ‘Secondary Game”s publication, Barbilian wrote: “I personally consider myself a representative of the Erlangen Program, that movement of ideas that, from the standpoint of its consequences and the overturn of viewpoints, can be compared with the Discourse on the Method or with the Reform itself. Instead of the narrow specialization or the opaque technicality, which preceded the Erlangen Program, it brought an illuminated eclecticism. It pursues the depth of each theory, without missing from sight the homogeneity and unity of the whole.” Starting our inquiry from this standpoint, we investigate the existence of the common roots of ‘Secondary Game”s poetics and the philosophy of the Erlangen Program. Our conclusion is that the Erlangen Program yielded in the field of Romanian letters a totally unexpected outcome: an aesthetic vision.

Bogdan SUCEAVA (b. 1969) has a degree in mathematics (1994) and a M.Sc in geometry (1995) from the University of Bucharest, and a doctorate in mathematics from Michigan State University, East Lansing (2002). He is now a full professor of mathematics at California State University, Fullerton, where he taught since 2002. He has written articles on mathematics and the history of mathematics, some of which appeared in Historia Mathematica, the Notices of the American Mathematical Society, the Mathematical Intelligencer, among many others; two of historical essays are included in the Best Writings on Mathematics anthologies (2016, 2018) published by the Princeton University Press.  He is also the author of 17 literary volumes, including Miruna: A Tale (Curtea Veche, 2007; Polirom 2016), The Night When Somebody Died for You (Polirom, 2010), Coming from an Off key Time (Polirom, 2004; 2nd edition, 2010; 3rd edition, 2014), Avalon. Secrets of Happy Emigrants (Polirom, 2018).


Call for Presentations PHSS 2019, Iași 17-18 May: Interdisciplinarity — An Umbrella Term?

For Romanian, please click here.

There is no unitary theory of interdisciplinarity, but we are most certainly crossing a postdisciplinary era, one in which inter-, multi-, transdisciplinarity have already merged into a meta-discipline, a new idiom where all these prefixes are partially interchangeable. But what does the conceptual vocabulary of interdisciplinarity consist of today? Which are its applicative methodologies? How do we acknowledge the potential meeting points of two distinct disciplines? How can these meetings be encouraged? And how does the imperative of being interdisciplinary shape the policies of research and the academic culture?

In order to answer these questions, the 6th edition of the PHSS Conference will focus on four thematic areas: conceptual vocabulary, epistemologies and methodologies, interferences, forms of collaboration. Theoretical approaches, as well as focused case studies and inter- and transdisciplinary explorations are welcome. Our selection will attempt, as far as possible, to come with a balanced selection of these four areas of interest:

Conceptual vocabulary

  • Theories of post-, inter-, multi-, transdisciplinarity
  • Operational metaphors of interdisciplinarity: hibridization, contamination, virus,
  • From the humanist model of antiquity to transdisciplinarity: key concepts and their historical evolution
  • Interdisciplinarity within the Academia: new disciplines and cross-disciplinary research areas

Epistemologies and methodologies

  • Models of world representation from an inter- and transdisciplinary perspective: theory of evolution, world-systems theory etc.
  • Interdisciplinarity in contemporary literary theory
  • Objects of speculative thinking in antiquity: from theology to physics, from ethics to political studies
  • Inter- and transdisciplinary methods in social sciences and humanities


  • Multi- and interdisciplinary research fields: memory studies, trauma studies, gender studies, etc.
  • Digital literacy: modes of writing and reading in the digital medium
  • Intermediality and intertextuality in literature, film, visual arts and performing arts
  • Computational linguistics: instruments and applications of classical linguistics
  • Martianus Capella and the system of the seven artes liberales

Forms of cross-collaboration

  • Forms of collaboration among science, art and technology
  • Interdisciplinarity, knowledge-transfer and cooperation with business and local communities
  • Interdisciplinarity in the entrepreneurial environment
  • Interdisciplinarity and interculturality

Conference languages: Romanian, English, and French.

There is no participation fee for this year’s edition.

The PHSS 2019 edition is partially supported through the research grants GI-UAIC-2017-01 and GI-UAIC-2017-02, currently implemented at the Institute for Interdisciplinary Research, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Department.

We invite researchers in all fields to submit abstracts until 22 April 2019.