Mind & Life’s International Symposium to Engage Interdisciplinary Dialogue with Scholars, Contemplatives, and Professionals

The biennial International Symposium for Contemplative Research (ISCR), convened by the Mind & Life Institute, will be held November 8-11, 2018 at the Sheraton Grand at Wild Horse Pass outside Phoenix, Arizona. The Call for Abstracts is now open until February 14, 2018.

The International Symposium for Contemplative Research, formerly the International Symposium for Contemplative Studies (ISCS), is the flagship academic conference for interdisciplinary investigations of the mind and contemplative practices. ISCR welcomes all engaged in contemplative research and those who seek to understand how to apply this research in their work and communities. A broad understanding of research includes investigations in the sciences, humanities, and social sciences as well as first-person modes of inquiry, such as meditation and artistic practice.

The ISCR meets the need for a recurring venue for scholars, practitioners, and students in  emerging contemplative fields to come together, share new findings, and network with established and potential collaborators. The 2018 ISCR program engages interdisciplinary dialogue through several new modules, including Master Panels, Discussion Sessions, Paper Sessions, and a Community Resource Fair.

  • Master Panels will engage leading thinkers and practitioners in pressing questions for contemplative research and society:
    • What is the future of contemplative research and programs in higher education, sciences of mind, and the arts?
    • How can insights gained from contemplative practice empower diverse human communities to transform structures of inequity?
  • A Community Resource Fair, hosted in tandem with the poster session, will gather participants to network across contemplative programs, departments, labs, and funding bodies.

Scholars and students are encouraged to submit an abstract to present their research in one or more category: (1) Paper Presentation, (2) Paper Session, (3) Discussion Session, and (4) Poster Presentation.

  • Paper Sessions are opportunities to self-organize and curate a session composed of three paper presentations.
  • Discussion Sessions are forums for specialists to enter interdisciplinary dialogue on key issues relevant to contemplative fields of inquiry.

Discussion Sessions and Papers Sessions are each limited to three presenters and one presider. For a detailed description of each presentation category, please see the ISCR Call for Abstracts Presentation Categories.

The Call For Abstracts is now open.

Instructions for submission are found here »

This 4th International Symposium for Contemplative Research builds on prior Symposia by enhancing rigor, depth, and diversity of perspective. Program innovations are designed to generate collaboration, strengthen community, and advance new areas for research on the mind and contemplative practice that contribute to the reduction of suffering and the promotion of human flourishing.

Since its founding 30 years ago, the Mind & Life Institute has been the driving force in creating and growing the contemplative sciences. Beginning as a series of dialogues between His Holiness the Dalai Lama and leading Western scientists and scholars, Mind & Life has since expanded to become the leading convener, catalyst, and community builder in supporting contemplative research and bridging practice and real world applications.

For more information about the International Symposium for Contemplative Research and the Call for Abstracts, please contact:

Carly Margolis, Program Manager

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