The 2nd RFF “Changing Societies” will open with a special panel on the consequences of the Ukrainian war for the future of Europe

Poster indicating the name of the activity.

The University of Graz will host the next Arqus Research Focus Forum “Changing Societies – Dimensions of Europeanization” from 13th to 15th May. The Forum is organised by the Field of Excellence “Dimensions of Europeanization” of the University of Graz and the Center for Southeast European Studies (CSEES) in collaboration with the Arqus Alliance. The Forum will open with a special panel on the impact of the Ukrainian war on the future of Europe.

The Field of Excellence deals with social transformation processes in Southeastern Europe from a comparative perspective. Namely, the Forum "Dimensions of Europeanization" will explore changing discourses about the understanding, organization, and in particular, the unification of the material and figurative territory referred to as “Europe” in time and space. It builds on the long-established research expertise in South-eastern Europe at the University of Graz.

During the Forum, a wide range of paper proposals from different disciplines will be presented on the larger question of changing societies in Europe. In particular, the conference will address the following themes:

  • Localization and Regionalization as Parallel Processes to Europeanization.
  • Gender in the Former State-Socialist Countries of Europe and in their Transformations.
  • Language and Plurality in Europe’s Changing Societies.
  • Changing Societies – Changing Relationships.

The event will offer time for internal networking to foster the exchange, establishment and development of sustainable contacts among the Arqus colleagues and other academics from Graz. For more information visit this website.

Special opening panel on “Future of Europe in the Light of the Russian War Against Ukraine”

The Research Focus Forum will open with a special panel devoted to explore the future of Europe in the light of the Russian war against Ukraine on 13th May. The panellists invited will share their perspectives on what the war in Ukraine means for Europe and reflect on the different responses in Europe to the Russian aggression. Florian Bieber, director of the CSEES, will moderate the panel and address the panelists with specific questions:

  • Has the war really been a “Zeitenwende” (turn of an era) for Europe?
  • How and why have many Western European political and intellectual elites “forgotten” European wars since 1945?
  • How do we need to de-colonize not just the history of Eastern Europe, but also European discourses about its East?
  • How could and should the EU change in light of this experience, both for itself, but also towards Ukraine?

The panel participants are:

  • Fabian Zuleeg, the director of the influential think tank European Policy Centre in Brussel. He will be reflecting on the meaning of war for the European Union.
  • Velina Tchakarova, the director of the Austrian Institute for European and Security Policy. Her expertise include global security issues as well as the cooperation between Russia and China.
  • Vedran Dzhic from the Austrian Institute for International Affairs will reflect on the importance of the war for the Balkans, but also on why the war in former Yugoslavia is often "forgotten".
  • Olesya Khromeychuk, director of the Ukrainian Institute in London, is a historian and will reflect on what Europe means for Ukraine and how the (Western) European gaze often ignores countries like it.

This debate will also be available via livestream and recorded. For more information, visit this website.

The section of the news about the special opening of the Forum has been created by Gerhild Leljak (Communications Officer at the University of Graz).