Project summary

An increasing number of national and international nuclear energy organizations today work explicitly with their “atomic heritage”. They have realized that building final repositories for spent nuclear fuel, or decommissioning a nuclear plant, are not exclusively technical challenges but also a question of handling heritage.

In spite of this growing focus, academic investigations have hitherto dealt with nuclear technology and heritage mainly as separate entities. The proposed project responds to this gap with the overarching aim to articulate atomic heritage as a field of academic inquiry and to generate new knowledge about its character, impact and potential.

Our research questions focus on 1) waste – e.g. how responsibility for radioactive leftovers is attributed to nuclear experts and society at large in various ways, 2) community – e.g. how the high-status identity of mono-industrial nuclear communities is negotiated in a decommissioning process, and 3) imaginaries – e.g. how past utopian-dystopian dichotomies attached to nuclear power are reinvented in relation to current issues like climate change.

The project is theoretically based in critical heritage studies, and a view on heritage as an element and expression of intensified cultural negotiation. Case studies will be carried out at selected nuclear power plants and connected communities in Sweden, the UK, Russia and France within an overall ethnographic methodological approach.

Short bios

Anna Storm, PhD in 2008 in History of Technology at KTH and Docent in 2016 in Human Geography at Stockholm University, Sweden. Previous positions at the Centre for Baltic and East European Studies at Södertörn University and at the Dept of Human Geography at Stockholm University. Currently project researcher at Södertörn University. Author of Post Industrial Landscape Scars (Palgrave Macmillan 2014).

Florence Fröhlig, PhD in 2013 in Ethnology at Södertörn University, Sweden. Active in the development of Romani studies at Södertörn University. Currently postdoc in the international research project TRANSWEL (Mobile Welfare in a Transnational Europe: An Analysis of Portability Regimes of Social Security Rights) funded by Norface, and postdoc in the Nuclear legacies project, both at Södertörn University, Sweden.

Tatiana Kasperski, PhD in 2012 in Political Science at Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris, France. Previous positions at Centre Alexandre Koyré, Paris; Colby College, Maine, USA; and European Humanities University, Vilnius, Lithuania. Currently project researcher at Södertörn University, researcher in the HoNESt (History of Nuclear Energy and Society) project and Marie Curie research fellow at the Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain.

Eglė Rindzevičiūtė, PhD in 2008 and Docent in 2012 in Culture Studies at Linköping University. Previous positions at universities of Gothenburg (GRI); Linköping (Tema Q) and Centre d’études européennes, Sciences Po, Paris. Currently Lecturer in Sociology at Kingston University, UK; and Visiting Research Fellow at the School of Public Administration in Gothenburg University, Sweden. Author of The Power of Systems: How Policy Sciences Opened Up the Cold War World (Cornell University Press 2016), co-editor of The struggle for the long-term in transnational science and politics: forging the future (Routledge 2015).

För information om nuvarande gemensamt projekt (2015−2017) se nuclearlegacies.wordpress.com.

Tid: 13 september, 2017, kl. 13.00−14.30.
Plats: X308, Geovetenskapens hus, Frescati.
Presentatörer: Anna Storm, Kulturgeografiska institutionen, Stockholms universitet, Florence Fröhlig, Södertörns högskola, Tatiana Kasperski, Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris, och Eglė Rindzevičiūtė, Linköpings universitet.
Organisatör: Kulturgeografiska institutionen, Stockholms universitet.