Bridging the Baltic 5, Odense 2022

Negotiating the common good – medical networks and transfers across the Iron Curtain in the Baltic Sea Area c. 1945-2004

Call for abstracts

The symposium will take place on March 18-19, 2022, at the University of Southern Denmark, Odense. The first day will be reserved for panel presentations and related discussions; the second day for a workshop on future proposals regarding the overall subject of scientific and medical cooperation inthe Baltic Searegion. We particularly welcome papers with the following themes:

A. Transition and continuity after the Second World War: How did increasing political tensions influence medical networks and transfers of medical knowledge across Europe after 1945? To what extent did medical institutions and national governmental agencies succeed in cooperating and securing exchange of medical knowledge across the Iron Curtain?

B. Control of scientific cooperation during the Cold War: To what extent did governments use the scientific and medical network for their own political agendas? How were scientists used in e.g. public diplomacy? How did security and intelligence agencies react to networks across the Baltic Sea and the (wet) iron curtain?

C. The aftermath of the Cold War: In what way did transnational medical networks re-emerge after the end of the Cold War? How did previously fragmented and divided networks of medical actors initiate collaboration after decades of conflict?

We welcome submissions from interested scholars at all levels.Submissions should include an abstract (no longer than 300 words) and a short bio (no longer than 150 words). All accepted papers shall be presented in English and last a maximum of 20 minutes followed by 10 minutes for discussion. We will cover the costs for travel and accommodation for all speakers.

Abstract deadline: February 5, 2022,
please send to Thomas Wegener Friis <> and Nils Hansson <>

About us: The symposium is organized by the Bridging the Baltic network, funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and lead by the Department for the History, Philosophy, and Ethics of Medicine at the Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf. This will be our fifth “Bridging the Baltic”-meeting, after symposia in Lund, Düsseldorf, Online and Riga 2014-2021. For papers presented at earlier “Bridging the Baltic”-meetings, see Hansson N, Wistrand J (eds). Explorations in Baltic Medical History 1850-2015. University of Rochester Press 2019. More information:

Contacts: Nils Hansson, Düsseldorf:
Thomas Wegener Friis, Odense:
Jennie Sejr Junghans, Odense:

Scientific Board
Denmark: Thomas Wegener Friis, Jennie Sejr Junghans (Odense); Estonia: Erki Tammiksaar (Tartu); Finland: Pieter Dhondt (Kuopio), Heini Hakosalo (Oulu); Germany: Thorsten Halling, Felicitas Söhner (Düsseldorf), Merle Weßel (Oldenburg), Steffen Fleßa (Greifswald); Latvia: Ieva Libiete, Juris Salaks (Riga); Lithuania: Aistis Zalnora (Vilnius); Poland: Władysław Bułhak (Warsaw), Joanna Nieznanowska (Szczecin); Sweden: David Dunér, Peter Nilsson, Jonatan Wistrand (Lund).

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