First Call for Papers

Histories of Computing in Asia

South China University of Technology
Guangzhou • December 2020

The next meeting of IFIP’s Working Group 9.7 will be hosted by the South China University of Technology (SCUT) in Guangzhou, China, from 4 to 8 December 2020. Our proposed workshop will bring together international and Chinese academic researchers, public historians, and industry professionals who are interested in the history of computing. 


The theme of conference will be histories of computing in Asia, with a particular emphasis on contextualizing China’s success in computing. The program committee will consider any paper in line with this theme, but we are particularly interested in topics such as:

  1. China, Asia, and Beyond. The rapid rise of Chinese computing:
    1. electronic computing and the three phases of Chinese manufacturing: introduction, digestion, re-innovation
    2. computing innovations by Chinese professionals, both within the PRC and by overseas Chinese in other countries
    3. antecedents to business models like the sharing economy, e-payments, and online shopping that led to success for Alibaba, Tencent, and others
    4. computing in the Asian republics of the former USSR (such as Kazakhstan)
  2. Internationalism. Frameworks that foster multinational cooperation and innovation:
    1. computing on the silk road, and along the modern belt and road
    2. standards, protocols, and diplomacy 
    3. machine translation, global English, and language plurality
  3. Science and Technology Studies. History and philosophy of technology, from east to west:
    1. theoretical and ideological responses to computing
    2. case studies of equitable technological development
    3. insights from feminist, masculinity, and gender studies
    4. linguistic analysis in the history of computing, computing’s contributions to linguistics 
  4. Pedagogy. Teaching the history of computing in or about Asia to:
    1. engineering students
    2. business, humanities, and social science students
    3. high school students
    4. employees or the general public
  5. Public History and Imagination. Remembering and presenting histories of computing:
    1. images of computing in literature, film, and television
    2. computing in/with/for the arts and humanities
    3. preserving and presenting the history of computing inside and outside of Asia

Review Process

Academic and amateur historians, computing and informatics professionals, archivists, and museum curators are welcome to submit papers for this workshop. Following our typical practice, we will ask for full papers for anonymous peer review by a program committee. If you would like preliminary feedback on the suitability of your project, you may submit an extended abstract in advance.

Accepted papers must be revised according to the comments of the peer reviewers. In order to provide for a lively discussion at the workshop, we will distribute draft papers to participants in advance. After the workshop, authors will have the chance to incorporate feedback from the audience before submitting their final papers for consideration of the edited volume of selected papers for the proceedings volume. The official language of the workshop and the printed proceedings is English.

Important Dates

  • 22 March 2020: Deadline for optional review of extended abstracts (1000–2000 words and bibliography) for review by the Program Committee
  • 1 May 2020: Draft paper submissions open on workshop website
  • 1 June 2020: Deadline to submit draft papers for consideration by Program Committee
  • 1 September 2020: Comments from Program Committee, decisions, and invitations sent to authors
  • 4 November 2020: Collection of papers, revised based on reviewer comments using Springer template, for distribution to workshop participants
  • 4 December 2020: Participants arrive in Guangzhou, China
  • 13 January 2021: Revised papers due for consideration in proceedings volume

Enquires in advance of your submission may be addressed to the chair of the working group, Christopher Leslie, at <>.

For instructions on how to submit your extended abstract or draft paper, please fill out the form:


The International Federation of Information Technology (IFIP), established in 1960, consists of fourteen technical committees (TCs) dedicated to information and communication technologies and sciences. Most are technical in nature. Technical Committee 9 (TC 9), however, is dedicated to the intersection of information communication technology (ICT) and society. Working Group 9.7 focuses on the history of computing and seeks to support effective teaching, academic research, and public histories. History of computing is a broad term that can include such topics as pre-digital (analog) computers. For more information and a list of our previous workshops, see


SCUT ( is a comprehensive research university with a specialization in engineering. Located in China’s third-largest city, the university is easily accessible by Baiyun International Airport as well as high-speed rail. As a major transportation hub, Guangzhou is less than two hours away by train from Shenzhen, Hong Kong, and Macau. It is also less than three hours away by airplane from many cities in the region, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Hanoi, Bangkok, Taipei, Manila.

Guangzhou is capital of Guangdong province, which is famous for the many emigrants who brought Chinese culture to the rest of the world, and visitors can enjoy learning about 2,500 years of history here. Guangdong province is also the tech capital of China, where many internet and new media companies (such as Tencent) are located. In this way, Guangzhou offers visitors a glimpse into China’s future as well as its past.