NASS VIII: Aarhus May 2013




We hereby invite submission of abstracts for oral or poster presentations for the Eighth Conference of the Nordic Association for Semiotic Studies (NASS), to be held at the Center for Semiotics, University of Aarhus, Denmark, May 29th – 31st, 2013.

The theme of this year’s conference is the evolution of signs, and will thus – among many others – address the following questions:

  • What are the basic mechanisms and conditions for the emergence of new signs and sign systems (such as codes, notational systems, verbal and sign languages, gesture, graphical symbols, pictorial expression, etc.)?
  • To which extent should we search for these mechanisms at the level of biology, culture, cognition, phenomenological experience or interaction?
  • And what are the relevant features of signs themselves making them emerge, survive and propagate in contexts of communication?

The conference brings together international scholars from a range of disciplines each addressing these questions in relation to particular time scales ranging from biological and cultural evolution to ontogeny and online social interaction.

Presentations should address aspects of how signs and sign systems emerge and develop on different time scales. Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Sign emergence and development on an evolutionary time scale
  • Sign emergence and development on a cultural historical timescale
  • Sign emergence and development on an ontogenetic time scale
  • Sign emergence and development on online interactive time scale
  • Cultural perspectives on sign emergence and development
  • Cognitive perspectives on sign emergence and development
  • Dynamical systems perspectives on sign emergence and development
  • Phenomenological perspectives on sign emergence and development
  • Neurological perspectives on sign emergence and development
  • Biological perspectives on sign emergence and development

Invited Plenary Speakers (* = Not yet confirmed):

  • Jordan Zlatev (Lund University)
  • Fatima Cvrckova – (Charles University, Prague)
  • Bruno Galantucci (Yeshiva University, NY)
  • Susan Goldin-Meadow (University of Chicago)
  • Winfried Nöth (University of Kassel)*
  • Luc Steels (Vrije Universiteit Brussel)*

Paper submissions:

Abstracts should be no more than 300 words and should be sent as an attachment to in doc, docx, ort or pdf format. Please do not include name or contact details in the text file. Specify in a cover mail your Title, Name, Affiliation, and whether the abstract is intended for oral or poster presentation. Please also indicate if your abstract should be considered part of a theme session (if you are taking part in organizing one) and if you would be willing to present a poster if the abstract is not accepted for oral presentation.

Deadline: January 31

Theme Sessions proposals:

Proposals for thematic sessions should contain an abstract of no more than 300 words describing the theme. It should also specify the name and affiliation of the organizer(s) and a list of people that would potentially like their presentation to be part of the theme session (IMPORTANT: each participant should still submit her own individual paper abstract that will go through regular peer review). The theme session proposal should be send to as an attachment in doc, docx, ort or pdf format. Please specify in a cover mail the Title, Name(s) and Affiliation(s) of the theme session organizers and the title of the theme session proposal. Theme session organizer(s) may be contacted about the potential inclusion of additional papers from general submission if these seem to fit the proposed theme.

Deadline: December 31

Important Dates

  • October 15: First Call for Papers and Theme Session Proposals
  • December 1: Second Call for Papers and Theme Session Proposals
  • December 31: Deadline for theme session proposals
  • January 31: Deadline for abstract submission
  • March 15: Notification of acceptance
  • May 29 – May 31: Conference

Scientific Committee:

  • Luis E. Bruni (Aalborg University)
  • Jordan Zlatev (Lund University)
  • Göran Sonesson (Lund University)
  • Sara Lenninger (Lund University)
  • Torill Strand (University of Oslo)
  • Morten Tønnessen (University of Stavanger)
  • Inesa Sahakyan (Université of Perpignan Via Domitia)
  • Riin Magnus (University of Tartu)
  • Ahti-Veikko Pietarinen (University of Helsinki)
  • Tommi Vehkavaara (Tampere University)
  • Bergljot Kristjansdottir (University of Island)
  • Sigrún Margrét Guðmundsdóttir (University of Island)
  • Svend Østergaard (Aarhus University)
  • Riccardo Fusaroli (Aarhus University)
  • Frederik Stjernfelt (Aarhus University)

If you have any questions or comments related to the conference organization, please email Kristian Tylén:

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