7th International Martial Arts Studies Conference

June 29 – July 2, 2022, Lausanne University, Switzerland

Martial Arts, Tradition and Globalisation

This conference was originally planned for summer 2021, but was postponed until 2022 because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Download the Conference Brochure here

This landmark international conference will be hosted and co-organised by the University of Lausanne, and will see for the first time the joining together of the annual conferences of the Martial Arts Studies Research Network and the martial arts and combat sports commission of the German Society of Sport Science (DVS-Kommission ‘Kampfkunst & Kampfsport’).


What are the relationships between martial arts, globalisation and tradition? What are the dynamics and effects of each on the others? This conference poses these questions to the growing interdisciplinary field of martial arts studies, in a landmark international event: a conference that brings together for the first time the Martial Arts Studies Research Network and the German Martial Arts and Combat Sports Commission. Taking place in the Institute of Sport Sciences of the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, with events also taking place at the Confucius Institute (University of Geneva) and the Olympic Museum (Lausanne), this is a major event for the international and multidisciplinary academic study of martial arts.


Call for Papers

The organisers invite proposals for individual 20-minute presentations (or panels made up of 3×20-minute presentations) focusing on any aspect of the complex issues of tradition and innovation in martial arts. However, the organisers are particularly interested in works that engage with martial arts, martial arts studies, tradition and innovation in relation to such themes as:

• Martial arts, globalisation and tradition
• Martial arts, tradition and technology
• Martial arts and nationalism
• Martial arts, soft power and diplomacy
• Martial arts and sport
• Martial arts and body culture
• Histories, representations and curations of martial arts
• Martial arts traditions, myths and myth-busting
• Martial arts as intangible cultural heritage
• Innovation in/and traditional martial arts

To submit a proposal for an individual paper or a complete themed panel (of three connected papers), please send one Word Document to the organising team at the email address: info-MAS2021@unil.ch containing the following information:

• Title
• Abstract (300 words max)
• Bio-note (150 words max)
• Keywords (5 max)
• Contact email address
• Link to personal or professional webpage (if available)

Deadline for Proposals: 30 November 2021
Notification: December 2021
Registration opens: January 2022


To be confirmed on the host venue website: https://wp.unil.ch/mas2021/


Confirmed Keynotes

  • Lauren Steimer (University of South Carolina, US)
  • Swen Körner (German Sport University, Cologne, DE)
  • Benjamin N. Judkins (Cornell University, US)
  • Dr Marjolein Van Bavel (University of Antwerp)
  • Professor Mario Staller (University of Applied Sciences for Police and Public Administration in North Rhine-Westphalia)
  • Professor Paul Bowman (Cardiff University)


About Us

The conference is organised in partnership with:

Institute of Sport Sciences of the University of Lausanne, CH.

Martial Arts Studies Research Network, based in the School of Journalism, Media and Culture (JOMEC) at Cardiff University, UK.

The German Society of Sport Science, Commission for Martial Arts and Combat Sports, Hamburg, DE

The Confucius Institute of the University of Geneva, CH.

Host venue website: https://wp.unil.ch/mas2021/

Organising Committee

  • Daniel Jaquet, Historisches Institut, University of Bern (General Secretary)
  • Paul Bowman, School of Journalism, Media and Culture, Cardiff University
  • Mario Staller, Hochschule für Polizei und öffentliche Verwaltung Nordrhein Westfalen.
  • Patrick Clastres, Institut des Sciences du Sport (ISSUL), University of Lausanne
  • Bertand Fincoeur, Institut des Sciences du Sport (ISSUL), University of Lausanne (Vice General Secretary)
  • Pierrick Porchet, Confucius Institute, University of Geneva
  • Alexandre Mathys, Institut des Sciences Sociales (ISS), University of Lausanne
  • Valentina Salonna, Institut des Humanités en médecine (IHM), University of Lausanne
  • Sixt Wetzler, German Blade Museum, Solingen


Scientific Committee

  • Paul Bowman, Cardiff University (Chair)
  • Patrick Clastres, Institut des Sciences du Sport (ISSUL), University of Lausanne
  • Mario Staller, Hochschule für Polizei und öffentliche Verwaltung Nordrhein Westfalen
  • Michel Brousse, University of Bordeaux
  • Sarah Kenderdine, Laboratory for Experimental Museology (EM+), EPFL
  • Ben Judkins, Cornell University & MAS Journal
  • Meaghan Morris, University of Sydney
  • Lauren Griffith, Texas Tech University


Download the conference schedule here


NB: for the most up-to-date information, please consult the host venue website: https://wp.unil.ch/mas2021/ or email info-MAS2021@unil.ch.