ISHPSSB meets every two years, in odd-numbered calendar years. During the even-numbered "off" years, the Society will help to publicize as well as lend its name to workshops or meetings that satisfy the criteria below. Such workshops ideally present the opportunity for informal discussions in a relaxed atmosphere, and may also offer formal sessions.

The Off-Year Workshop Committee is charged with soliciting and reviewing off-year workshop proposals.

Some funding for graduate student travel (ISHPSSB members only) to the workshops may be available.


  • meetings must be interdisciplinary (combining the disciplines of history, philosophy, and or social studies of biology);
  • meetings must meet all the requirements of Society meetings concerning accessibility, open access, and open invitations to members;
  • meetings must be thematic in nature, which distinguishes them from the regular ISHPSSB meetings. This theme must appeal the Society's membership broadly;
  • meetings must reflect the international nature of the ISHPSSB;
  • meetings may be organized as workshops or as conventional meetings, but all members must be eligible to attend;
  • the selection process for speakers can be determined by clearly indicated processes that differ from those used at the biennial Meetings.

ISHPSSB Workshop Proposal Guidelines

Prepared by Chris Young, Nathaniel Comfort, Christiane Groeben, Jane Maienschein, and Lenny Moss (September 2001).

An invitation to host a Workshop authorized by the International Society for History, Philosophy, and Social Studies of Biology (ISHPSSB) should address the following items and be sent to the ISHPSSB President:

Proposed mission and vision:
What theme and format? Why is a meeting on this topic or problem necessary, important, and/or timely? Why is the proposed format appropriate given the goals of the meeting?
Proposed site
Proposed dates:
Have potential conflicts with any other meetings (e.g., International History of Science; International Logic, Methodology, and Philosophy of Science; other?) been investigated? Are facilities known to be available?
Proposer (name, professional title, mail and email addresses, phone and fax numbers):
What relation does the proposer have to the proposed site, (e.g., faculty at the university)?
Location and accessibility:
Where is the meeting to be held? What are its advantages?
Transportation to site — airline, train, bus, and automobile service: Is transportation for international travelers easy? Is airfare competitively priced? (This usually means that more than one airline services the route(s).) Is there adequate local transportation to the proposed site? Can tickets for local transportation to the site be purchased prior to the meeting? Is parking available at a reasonable rate?
Meeting Rooms: Have room needs been assessed? Are the meeting rooms air-conditioned? Do they have good acoustics?
Audiovisual equipment availability: Are overhead transparency projectors available for each room? Are microphones, slide projectors, VCRs, computer projectors available, as needed?
Accessibility: See the Appendix with guidelines to the Site Selection Committee page.
Staff: Who will be available to help with running the meeting? Staffing registration table? Audio/Visual aids? Others?
Since ISHPSSB will not provide financial assistance for proposed workshops, organizers need only indicate that:
  1. sufficient funding is available
  2. the source of funding
  3. Estimate of charges to registrants:
    • Registration Costs (based on how many expected registrations)?
    • Dorm Room: amount per night single? amount per night double?
    • Parking fees?
    • Banquet or picnic amount per person: ...
    • Estimated Total Cost to registrants: ...

2015 Report of the Off-year Workshop Committee

By This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Committee Members:

  • Akihisa Setoguchi (Chair)
  • Lynn Chien-Hui Chiu
  • Karola Stotz

The off-year ISHPSSB workshop 2014, "Changing Life in Times of Crisis", was held on May 17-21 at the Old Fire Station in Woods Hole Massachusetts, USA. There were 16 participants from 5 countries, including 8 graduate students. There were arguments on various topics such as regulation of biotechnology, philosophy of mind, and toxic chemicals and women's health. Please see ISHPSSB newsletter for further information: