International Seminar on

Spatial Analysis in Historical Demography:

Micro and macro approaches

Quebec City, Canada, 17-18 September 2015


Seminar organized by the IUSSP Scientific Panel on Historical Demography and hosted by the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi.



Deadline for submission of abstracts extended to 15 March 2015


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In recent years many new data sources have become available to historical demographers, which often include detailed geographical information allowing for sophisticated spatial analysis. Full-count data from national censuses with geographical identifiers at low levels of aggregation, even at the scale of the individual, as well as detailed historical maps of cities and countrysides are two examples of such developments. The linkage of contextual information to micro-level socioeconomic and demographic data further enrich these data sources and opens up a whole new range of possibilities for greatly improving our understanding of demographic patterns in the past. Spatial modeling of fertility and mortality change in the past, or of the diffusion of new behavior in family formation and partner selection could make major contributions for our understanding of the first demographic transition. The analytical possibilities afforded by utilizing a historical GIS offers a completely new perspective and knowledge about the interaction between climatic, environmental, socioeconomic and demographic processes relating to health, mortality, migration, and families in the past.  


The aim of this seminar is to stimulate original research in historical demography making use of these new data resources and infrastructures to address the major themes of the discipline and to bring together researchers from various backgrounds interested in spatial analysis in historical demography. 


  1. Macro-level analysis such as cluster analysis, spatial modelling of aggregate data, multilevel models of spatial structures using GIS.
  2. Micro-level analysis such as spatial analysis of life trajectories (marriage, fertility, mortality and migration), interactions between life courses and mobility, environment and social mobility.
  3. Macro-micro interactions such as contextual effects on individual life courses.

Although most papers are expected to make empirical contributions, more theoretical or methodological papers are also welcome, as long as they deal with the main topic of the seminar. We encourage submissions covering a variety of geographical scales, from small areas to entire countries or group of countries. 

Online Submissions:

The IUSSP Panel on Historical Demography invites researchers to submit online, by 15 March 2015 an extended abstract (2 to 4 pages, including tables) or a full unpublished paper for consideration. Please include a short 200-word abstract on the first page of your submission. To submit an abstract please fill out the online submission form here: ONLINE SUBMISSION FORM

The seminar will be limited to a maximum of 20 completed papers. The working language of the seminar will be English. Abstracts and final papers should therefore be submitted and presented in English. 

Submission should be made by the author who will attend the seminar. If the paper is co-authored, please include the names of your co-authors in your submission form (in the appropriate order).

Applicants will be notified whether their paper has been accepted by 1 April 2015.

Authors of accepted papers must upload the full paper on the IUSSP website by 31 August 2015.

The Panel plans to publish a set of the papers presented at the seminar as a special issue of a peer-reviewed journal or in an edited volume.


There is no fee to attend the seminar but participants must cover their travel and accommodation costs. The meeting will take place in Quebec City, Canada. Participants will be advised of a selection of hotels nearby the venue.


For further information, please contact one of the seminar organizers:

Martin Dribe, Lund University (

Diego Ramiro, Spanish Council for Scientific Research (

Hélène Vézina, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (

Don Lafreniere, Michigan Technological University (


IUSSP Scientific Panel on Historical Demography:

Chair: Diego Ramiro.

Members: Martin Dribe, Mamadou Fall, Rokhaya Fall, Satomi Kurosu, Lucia Pozzi, Alice Reid, Ana Silvia Scott, and Hélène Vézina.