This conferences aims to investigate the development and theorization of control practices in the 18th and 19th centuries, their roots in the pre- and early modern periods, and their connections to broader understandings of rigor and validation in practical inquiry. Despite its centrality to modern scientific inquiry, many foundational questions about control remain open. What range of practices constitute control? What functions can control serve in experimentation and experimental reports, and what are its limits? Are controlling practices understood differently in different disciplines or communities at different periods? To what extent? Where do scientific techniques and practices of control come from? How did the diverse practices of control become so central to scientific inquiry? And how did the practitioners themselves characterize diverse forms of control, debate their roles as validation procedures, their relative merits, practicality, and limitations?