Microbial Childhood Collaboratory (MCC)

Child and stones.

The Microbial Childhood Collaboratory is an interdisciplinary research group experimenting with ideas in a collective manner using slow science principles. The group is composed of a community artist and researchers working on the fields of environmental ecology and health, international relations, sociology, anthropology, childhood studies, social work, and early childhood education.

The project takes a “thinking microbially” approach which means paying attention to biological as well as sensory ecology combining biological and social perspectives. By ‘thinking microbially’, we connect current social and political theorizing with biological and ecological knowledge about the child and childhood. We also work with metaphors of the cellular level of the human microbiome and immune function in parallel with the grand scale of the concept of Gaia (Earth organisms) and seek to rapture the self/other division from this perspective.

The aims of our exploration are to take seriously in childhood research and practice the biosocial child as an ecosystem or ecology and as part of microbial and biospheric communities sustaining life and affording agencies. This work also necessitates – and joins others – in re-envisioning the ethics and politics of childhood related fields, including early childhood care, pedagogy and practice.

By combining science, art and activism, a Microbial Childhood Glossary, community artwork, and a new model for intergenerational future-making, we seek to enliven childhood studies, political activism and practice to navigate contemporary challenges and opportunities in the wider Nordic society and beyond.

For more information, contact Professor Zsuzsa Millei, zsuzsa.millei@tuni.fi

See more on Microbial Child (see section in article on ”The Micobial child’ – towards the end).

Look up other the webpage Microbial Childhood: Restor(y)ing Daycare Ecologies.


Collaboratory members:

Zsuzsa Millei (Tampere University, Finland)

Sarah Alminde (Roskilde University, Denmark)

Asta Breinholt (Roskilde University, Denmark)

Eva Bubla (Artist / Activist, Hungary)

Beth Conklin (Vanderbilt University, USA)

Riikka Hohti (University of Helsinki and Tampere University, Finland)

Stefanie Fishel (University of Sunshine Cost, Australia)

Mira Grönroos (University of Helsinki, Finland)

Sami Keto (Tampere University, Finland)

Nick Lee (University of Warwick, UK)

Parinaz Poursafa (Tampere University, Finland

Marja Roslund (Natural Resources Institute, Finland)

Spyros Spyrou (European University, Cyprus)

Tuure Tammi (University of Oulu, Finland)

Hanne Warming (Roskilde University, Denmark)

Tampere Municipality, Elli Rasimus, Director of Early Childhood Education