CALL FOR PAPERS The 2018 AABS Conference at Stanford University: The 100th Anniversary of Baltic Independence June 1–3, 2018

May 25, 2017

The 2018 AABS Conference at Stanford University will celebrate two important milestones – the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies (AABS) and the 100th anniversary of independence for the Baltic republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

The conference will bring together scholars interested in Baltic studies from all over the world and foster collaboration between Baltic and Stanford researchers. The three-day program, to be held on Stanford University campus on June 1–3, 2018, will feature panels, round-table discussions and workshops on 16 broad topics. The conference will also include numerous additional events, such as keynote talks by leading Baltic scholars, film screenings, exhibits, and tours of Stanford’s Baltic collections.

The conference is organized by the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies (AABS) and the Stanford University Libraries (SUL). AABS is the world’s premier scholarly society for research on Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. Its global membership includes scholars and supporters from North America, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Sweden, Finland, Germany, Australia, Great Britain, Russia, Israel, Japan, and elsewhere. The Stanford University Libraries is considered one of the top academic libraries in the United States in terms of the size and strength of its Baltic collections. The library not only holds one of the best Baltic collections in the country, but also actively engages in supporting Baltic projects and activities, and enhancing Baltic studies at Stanford and beyond.

Conference program

The conference will highlight the achievements of Baltic studies a century after the three nations gained their independence and 27 years after the fall of the Soviet Union. Questions to be considered include: Why are Baltic studies important today? How does the region fit into larger global and transnational trends, including the growth of populism worldwide and the increasing instability catalyzed by the region’s eastern neighbor? What is the intersection between Baltic and East European studies? The conference will showcase cutting-edge Baltic research as well as highlight the roles of memory institutions and the digital humanities in Baltic studies.

The 2018 AABS Conference’s program is divided into 16 broad divisions:


Aesthetics and the Arts

Anthropology and Sociology


Business and Economics

Communication, Disinformation, and the Media

Digital Humanities


History and Memory

Jewish Studies

Libraries, Archives, Museums

Literature and Language Studies


Political Science and Regional Security


The Baltic Sea Region as an Emerging Tech Powerhouse

The conference divisions represent a wide spectrum of subject areas, each focusing on a set of topics currently relevant to corresponding fields. A detailed overview of questions each division will address can be found on the conference website:

Proposal process

The conference welcomes paper, poster, panel, round-table, and workshop proposals from established and emerging scholars, including graduate students. We particularly encourage submissions of full panel and round-table proposals on interdisciplinary and comparative topics.

The deadline for submissions is October 15, 2017. To submit your abstract, please visit the conference website:

All submissions must include an abstract of no more than 250 words and a short bio.

Please note that all non-Stanford presenters must be AABS members by June 1, 2018. Those accepted for the conference who are not already members, can join at:

The conference is free of charge to presenting participants, but attendees are responsible for their travel expenses. To assist with travel and accommodation costs, AABS expects to offer small travel grants to graduate students accepted to present at the conference.

Important dates:

Deadline for submissions: October 15, 2017

Notification of acceptance: December 1, 2017

Conference registration begins: December 1, 2017

Conference dates: June 1–3, 2018

Program committee: The conference program is organized by the program committee, which consists of renowned scholars and specialists representing institutions from the Baltic countries, the U.S., and Canada.


For any inquiries regarding the conference, please contact:

Liisi Esse, Ph.D. Liisi.Esse[at], ph. +1 (650) 736-4724
Assistant Curator for Estonian and Baltic Studies, Stanford University Libraries
Vice President for Conferences, Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies