13th Annual Mini-Conference on Critical Geography

Department of Geography

Ohio State University

Columbus, Ohio, USA

October 13-15, 2006


Scope of the Conference

This conference aims to provide a venue for broad discussion and debate in critical geography.  The conference welcomes practitioners and theorists of critical geography, on other words, those committed to understanding and changing exploitative economic, political, cultural, and social spaces and processes.  This goal suggests some current themes of critical geography, although the conference is meant to be catholic in its definition of ‘critical’: imperialism, war, neoliberalism, racism, colonialism and postcoloniality, sexism and misogyny, poverty, segregation, health and disease, political movements, indigeneity, global environmental degradation and politics, social nature, geopolitics, disenfranchisement, queer, feminist and radical politics.


We hope that presentations will reflect the great variety of approaches to doing and disseminating critical geographies.  We encourage participants to explore any range of interests, and to use the mini-conference as an opportunity to expand their current research agenda, explore new theoretical landscapes, meet other critical geographers, experiment with research dissemination, and receive friendly feedback on works in progress.



This year’s conference will begin late on Friday afternoon (Oct. 13, 2006) with a keynote address by John Paul Jones, III (University of Arizona) and an opening reception.  We plan to have sessions all day on Saturday and a closing panel (participants TBA) discussion on Saturday evening.  If there is great interest in the conference, sessions will conclude Sunday morning. Sunday morning may also serve as additional discussion time for all participants interested in exploring future critical geographies.


Because we wish to provide a forum for discussion of themes in critical geography (and the nature of what constitutes critical geography as well), interested participants should feel free to suggest ways of presenting their research, ideas, and art beyond formal paper sessions. We are open to formats such as round tables, panels and other discussion forums. If you are unsure about a particular format, please contact us.


Deadline for Submission of Abstracts: The target deadline for proposing a panel, roundtable, or submitting a paper to the mini-conference is July 15, 2006. Submit abstracts of 200 words or less, or proposals for panels, roundtables, or performances (including title of the paper/session and contact information including email address), to one of the following organizers:


Mathew Coleman (

Mary Thomas (

Joel Wainwright (



Panels and Roundtable Discussions

If you wish to organize a panel or roundtable (or an entirely different format), please provide a panel title and the contact information for all panelists/participants. Titles for individual contributions (if relevant) should also be provided. Panel organizers are responsible for the specific allocation of time and structure of the panel session. Please note that we reserve the right to add a panelist to previously organized panels if the topics fit.


Paper Presentations

Paper presenters should submit a paper title, abstract of 200 words or less, and contact information by the submission deadline. Paper sessions will include 3 papers and a discussant (or 4 papers depending on the number of participants).  This is not a juried conference.


By the end of August 2006, a webpage will be available (linked from the OSU Department of Geography’s main page:, and we will send the direct link to participants by email to aid your travel planning.  Discussants will be identified when the conference schedule is posted by mid September.  Paper presenters should please forward their paper to their discussant via e-mail by October 1.



Detailed information on accommodation forthcoming.

A block of rooms will be reserved at a local hotel, but hotel rooms are also widely available around the campus area.  Visitor parking passes are $3.00 per day at OSU’s surface lots, and the campus is easily available by bus from downtown Columbus.  We will provide links and information about parking, local buses, and other transportation needs on the conference website.


Accommodation for Students

Some Ohio State University graduate students may be willing to host graduate students in their homes. If you would like to stay with an OSU graduate student, please contact the conference organizers.


In solidarity, the conference organizers are: Mathew Coleman, Becky Mansfield, Mary Thomas, Joel Wainwright.


Brief History of the Conference

The Mini-Conference on Critical Human Geography began as an opportunity for faculty and students to informally exchange ideas and share their research in a collaborative learning environment. In 1994, Byron Miller (Calgary, formerly University of Cincinnati), Kevin Cox (Ohio State), and J.P. Jones (Arizona, formerly of University of Kentucky) held the first conference in the moot court chambers of the University of Cincinnati Law School. Since 2001, the conference has migrated from campus to campus. Today, the conference boasts participants from a variety of programs throughout the United States and Canada.


(Although they are not organizing this conference, see the International Critical Geography Group’s webpage for more information about critical geographies and upcoming events: