14. BIS 16. MÄRZ 2018

Boom – Crisis – Heritage.
King Coal and the Energy Revolutions after 1945

The conference in March 2018 is based on the interdisciplinary research project „From Boom to Crisis – German Coal Mining after 1945“. It is our aim to consider the multilayered processes of social, economic and cultural change triggered by transitions of energy regimes from international and comparative perspectives.

Rather than restricting our scope to a study of coal mining, the conference will also cover coal’s competitors as well as consumers and users of various forms of energy. This broad sweep is designed to enable the presumed existence of unique paths of development and their specific regional and national characteristics.

The conference explores topics in two subject areas.

One investigates the economic, social and technological development of the coal mining industry and related industries. In this theme we consider contemporary responses to the upheaval within the energy sector after 1945 and analyse the transformation of the World Wide Energy Market from the point of view of technological, environmental, economic, corporate, social or scientific history.

The other explores the tangible and intangible legacy of coal mining. We would like to put a spotlight on culturalization and touristification processes in relict energy landscapes as well as subsequent reuse.

The international conference is organized by the Mining History Section and the Montanhistorisches Dokumentationszentrum (montan.dok), Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum.

The conference and the research project „From Boom to Crisis – German Coal Mining after 1945“ are funded by the RAG foundation and will be organised in cooperation with the Department of History, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, and the Institut für Industriearchäologie, Wissenschafts- und Technikgeschichte (IWTG) der TU Bergakademie Freiberg.

Wednesday 14 Mar

11:00 – 12:30

Guided Tour
Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum (Entrance DBM+)

12:00 – 13:00


13:00 – 13:30

Opening address

13:30 – 14:30

Keynote I

Chair: Juliane Czierpka, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Per Högselius, KTH Royal Institute of Technology: The European Energy System in an Age of Globalization


14:30 – 14:40

Short break

14:40 – 15:50

Section I: Coal Policy and Politics

Chair: Dieter Ziegler, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Simon Yin, Hefei University of Technology: Transformation of Coal Industry in China

Robert Andrzejczyk, Nicolaus Copernicus University, Torun: Coal Diplomacy. Polish hard coal in the Scandinavian market (1945-1949)


15:50 – 16:20

Coffee break

16:20 – 18:00

Section II: Changing Energies in Regional Perspective I

Chair: Nikolai Ingenerf, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Andrea Pokludová & Petr Popelka, University of Ostrava: From the “steel heart of Czechoslovakia” to the postindustrial space. Boom, crisis and cultural heritage of the Ostrava-Karviná mining district (1945-2017)

Miles K. Oglethorpe, Industrial Heritage at Historic Environment Scotland: Losing our Mines – Scotland’s Coal Industry in Context

Michael Farrenkopf, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum: Short-time rise and decades decline – German hard coal mining after 1945


18:00 – 18:10

Short break

18:10 – 19:20

Section III: Changing Energies in Regional Perspective II. The Case of France

Chair: Stefanie van de Kerkhof, Universität Mannheim

Alain Beltran, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne: Changing a national energy policy – The case of France during the sixties

Douglas Yates, University of Cergy-Pontoise: The French Oil industry and the Corps des Mines. From family firms to national champions to private multinationals




Thursday 15 Mar

09:00 – 10:40

Section IV: Expectations and Institutions from the 1950s to the 1980s

Chair: Daniel Trabalski, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum


Juliane Czierpka, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum: Ruhr coal and oil. The DKBL and their predictions about the development of the market for energy in West-Germany in the early 1950s

Brian Shaev, Leiden University: Coal and Common Market. Consumers, Producers, and Crisis Management in the Early European Parliament, 1954-1964

Henning Türk, Centre for Contemporary History Potsdam: From oil to coal? The International Energy Agency (IEA) and international coal policy since the end of the 1970s


10:40 – 10:50

Short break

10:50 – 11:50

Keynote II

Chair: Torsten Meyer, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum


Timothy LeCain, Montana State University: Mining the Anthropocene. How the Metallic and Mineral Environment Created the Age of Humans


11:50 – 13:10

Lunch break

13:10 – 14:50

Section V: Environmental History and Industrial Nature

Chair: Helmut Maier, Ruhr-Universität Bochum


Torsten Meyer, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum: Biofacts – Recultivating post-mining landscapes in the Anthropocene

Anna Storm, Stockholm University: Nuclear Fish and (Post-)Industrial Nature Imaginaries

Pia Eiringhaus, Institute for Social Movements: Postindustrial Representations of Nature and Region in the Ruhr Area – A Critical Perspective on the Success Story „from Black to Green”


14:50 – 15:20

Coffee break

15:20 – 17:00

Section VI: Industrial Heritage

Chair: Helmuth Albrecht, TU Bergakademie Freiberg


Barry L. Stiefel, College of Charleston: Black Diamond Heritage: A Multinational Comparative Study of Coal Mining Preservation

Malte Helfer, University of Luxembourg: The legacy of coal mining – a view on examples in Belgium and France

Bruno De Corte, Antwerpen: From Green to Black and back to Green again – The Story of Safeguarding the Coalmining Heritage in the Limburg Area (Belgium)


17:00 – 18:30


18:30 – 20:00

Film & Panel Discussion

Tom Hansell, Appalachian State University: After coal. Welsh and Appalachian Mining Communities (Film)

Panel Discussion
Tom Hansell, Appalachian State University; Stefan Berger, Ruhr-Universität Bochum; Stefan Moitra & Stefan Przigoda, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Friday 16 Mar

09:00 – 10:40

Section VII: Meaning and Representation of Mining
Chair: Jana Golombek, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Jörg Arnold, University of Nottingham: Shifting Pasts, Receding Futures – The British Coal Industry, generational change and the politics of temporality (ca. 1967-1987)

Gisela Parak, TU Bergakademie Freiberg: Pulse for Preservation – Bernd & Hilla Becher and the Role of Photography in Industrial Heritage

Sigrun Lehnert, Hamburg Media School: Representation of Mining in the German Post-war Newsreel (East-West) (1948-1965)


10:40 – 11:10

Coffee break

11:10 – 12:50

Section VIII: Social Policy of Coal Mining
Chair: Martha Poplawski, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Lars Bluma, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum: “Humanisation of Work”. A watershed in Biopolitics of German Coal Mining?

Sara-Marie Demiriz, History of the Ruhr Foundation: Qualifying the stranger. Educational policies for migrant workers in the West German mining industry

Jan Kellershohn, Institute for Social Movements: The rationalisation of minds. Mining industry and the negotiation of knowledge under „deindustrialisation“


12:50 – 13:30

Closing address
Michael Farrenkopf & Lars Bluma, Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

13:30 – 17:00

Excursion: Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site

You can also download the conference programme here.


Technische Hochschule Georg Agricola, Studierendenzentrum, Gebäude 3 / Eingang C, Herner Straße 45, 44787 Bochum

Campus plan


Bochum Tourism offers a wide variety of recommended accommodation, from private apartments to hotel rooms: Bochum Tourism


Mining History Research Section , Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum

Mining History Document Centre (montan.dok) , Deutsches Bergbau-Museum Bochum


Dr. Juliane Czierpka, juliane.czierpka@bergbaumuseum.de , Tel.: +49 (234) 968-4134

Dr. Torsten Meyer, torsten.meyer@bergbaumuseum.de , Tel.: +49 (234) 968-4134