The University of Regensburg is home to numerous institutions and centers that promote research and teaching relevant to area studies across the faculties.
This page offers an overview of the various institutions based in Regensburg that promote the University's focus on innovative transnational studies and international degree programmes. In providing a platform for collaborative research projects in area studies, CITAS seeks to cooperate with the following existing centers in Regensburg.
A selection of events hosted by area studies initiatives in Regensburg can be found here.
Beyond the university, the Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies IOS, one of Germany's largest centres specializing in these regions, is also based in the city and collaborates closely with the University, as well as with CITAS.
The cooperation between the University of Regensburg and IOS in the realm of area studies has been strengthened by the launch of the Leibniz ScienceCampus Europe and America in the Modern World in September 2019. It explores the history and present of transatlantic relations from a multidisciplinary and transregional perspective. The ScienceCampus offers opportunities for doctoral students and provides them with a platform for bringing leading scholars to Regensburg and developing public engagement within the city.
The Bavarian Academic Center for Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe works with Bavarian universities and universities of applied science to recruit highly qualified academics from Central and Eastern Europe including Russia for exchange programs. It also promotes student exchanges involving these regions and Bavarian higher education institutions, with the long-established Bavarian-Czech Academic Agency (BTHA) being one successful example of promoting cross-border cooperation in research, teaching and exchanges.
BAYHOST also provides political, economic, social, cultural and linguistic expertise on its partner countries across East and Southeast Europe, while also promoting internships in those regions.
The canon of writings of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures is regarded as the fundamental authority in Christianity. Even after its finalization and its widespread recognition in the 4th century, however, there existed (and continue to exist today) traditions claiming authority, which lie beyond the canon and which were partly directed against canonical texts, sometimes selecting from and updating them. In a creative reception of Foucault’s concept, these traditions, generally known as “apocryphal,” as well as their expressive forms and communication contexts, can be understood as heterotopias, i.e. as “effective spaces,” serving as “abutments” in late ancient Christianity.
These traditions and their functions in the many diverse contexts of religious life are the focus of the Beyond Canon Collaborative Research Group (CRG). Specifically, the Beyond Canon CRG will focus on literary traditions beyond the biblical canon, on their diverse, often material forms of expression and starting points in “lived” and “popular” religion, and on their underestimated significance in the ritual life of the churches. The concept of the “intellectual space of late antiquity” is thereby expanded in the sense of a discourse space that also includes things and practices.
This interdisciplinary approach not only promises insights into the rather implicit mechanisms of religious communication and the making of theological knowledge, but it can also make an innovative contribution to general questions of canonical processes and alternative authorities as they are explored in cultural sciences and humanities.
The Bohemicum - Center for Czech Studies takes an area-based approach to Czech studies, examining the interconections with the languages, literature and cultures of Central Europe. The Center's work focuses on in the following themes: linguistic exchange and multilingualism, langauge policy and language management, multilingualism and literature, and nationalism and memory studies. The Center coordinates the international research project "Grenze/n in nationalen und transnationalen Erinnerungskulturen zwischen Tschechien und Bayern" (Borders in national and transnational memory cultures between the Czech Republic and Bavaria).
The Bohemicum collaborates with the Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies and also contributes the Slavonic and broader interdisciplinary degree programmes offered in Regensburg. The Center also offers it own study programmes, including „Regionalkompetenzen für die bayerisch-tschechische Grenzregion“ (Regional Competence for the Bavarian-Czech Border Region) and "Bohemicum (Sprach-, Kultur- und Arealkompetenz für Tschechien)" (Linguistic, cultural and areal competence for Czechia), as well as the bi-national BA "Deutsch-Tschechische Studien" (German-Czech studies double degree).
More information about the Center can be found on its website or in the flyer.
CITAS, founded in 2017, is an interfaculty center supported by the Faculty of Languages, Literature and Culture and the Faculty of Philosophy, Art History, History and the Humanities. The latter also includes Political Science, a key contributor area studies in Regensburg. CITAS is also open to collaboration with researchers from other disciplines, particularly in Law and Economics.
CITAS seeks to provide a platform to promote the expertise of the numerous successful institutions working in area studies across the disciplines, as well as the innovative international degree programmes. It also seeks to support early career scholars working in area studies, with the Working Group ag:itas providing a platform for this.
The Thematic Research Network "East-West-Transfers" has played an important role in the development of CITAS. The Network emphasized the political, social, economic and cultural entanglements and transfers across broadly conceived spaces defined as "East" and "West". These spaces cross both Europe and the Atlantic. The Network contributed to challenging stereotypical ways of conceiving of the relations between the regions. It encouraged collaboration across the disciplines and faculties to further develop expertise in area studies research and methods in Regensburg.-->
The Europaeum is the East-West Centre of Universität Regensburg. It was founded in November 2000 and, as a central facility, was given the task to stimulate and promote the interdisciplinary dialogue between Eastern and Western Europe in the areas of research and teaching. To achieve this goal, the Europaeum established the innovative Master's degree programme "East-West Studies" while it also organizes field trips to the region and numerous events. Its Secondos-Programm, meanwhile, is tailored to multilingual students with a background in the language and cultures they want to study.
Metropolitan cities are the landmarks of processes of urbanisation all over the world. The constitution and multiple meanings that attach to metropolises, their ,metropolitanism´, depend on historical and cultural conditions that have changed particularly dramatically in the last 150 years under the influence of industrialisation and globalisation. These most recent developments up to the present day have been studied intensively within the fields of metropolitan studies, urban sociology, and urban planning. However, we lack compatible theory-driven studies for the premodern period. This is in spite of the fact that the formative impact of individual urban centres is already apparent in a fully developed form in the first known urban cultures, in pre-Christian Asia. In Europe, the processes of urbanisation and metropolisation gain momentum and significance in Greco-Roman antiquity. It is notable that it is European cities which show the largest population figures worldwide between the 16th and the 18th centuries, and that almost without exception these metropolises can be traced back to Roman foundations.
On the basis of this observation, the projected graduate school investigates the longue durée of the European metropolis. It inquires into the constitution, impact, and transformation of metropolitan status from Greco-Roman antiquity to the threshold of industrialisation. Throughout this long time period, metropolitan cities serve as ,laboratories´ where new urban social and economic practices, technologies of power, and cultural codes emerge before they take hold in smaller urban centres and towns, which follow the model of metropolitan cities. This exemplary function of the metropolis necessarily corresponds to internal metropolitan self-ascription. The metropolis´ self-image and position as role-model exist in a close interrelationship with the formation and internal differentiation of metropolitan topography, society, and communication. These form the key research perspectives of the projected graduate school. They can only be investigated by a multidisciplinary team through the development of common methodological and thematic guidelines.
According to the working hypothesis of the applicants, metropolitanism distinguishes cities which become symbolic and functional reference points for urbanisation processes in a large transregional area. Metropolitanism also offers identificatory possibilities and a framework in which the individualised urban experiences of residents and nonresidents acquire coherence and become meaningful.
Forschungsstelle Kultur- und Kollektivwissenschaft is a research centre specializing in the study of culture and collectivities. It is supported by the Hansen Foundation in cooperation with the University of Regensburg. The research centre supports doctoral and postdoctoral researchers investigating themes relevant to the idea of collectivity. It organizes numerous academic events and also publishes the Zeitschrift für Kultur- und Kollektivwissenschaft (ZKKW). The centre contributes to undergraduate and postgraduate teaching at the University by sharing expertise on the subject of intercultural communication.
Forschungszentrum Deutsch in Mittel-, Ost- und Südosteuropa (FZ DiMOS) - the Research Center for German in Central, East and Southeast Europe is supported by the Faculty for Languages, Literature and Culture. The Center's research focus is on the German language as used in Eastern Europe and its interactions with local languages. FZ DiMOS collaborates closely with other institutions in Regensburg and is a partner in numerous international research projects through its extensive network of collaborators across the region.
The Spanish Research Centre - Forschungszentrum Spanien - El Centro de Estudios Hispánicos - is part of the Institute of Romance Studies at the University of Regensburg. The Centre promotes research and teaching on Spain and the Spanish-speaking world. By supporting events such as lecture series and film festivals, it also engages the broader public in discussing issues relating to Spain and Latin America. The Centre is a partner in the MA in Intercultural European Studies and the binational BA German-Spanish Studies.
The Forum Mehrsprachigkeit und Regionalität (FoMuR) (Multilingualism and Regionalism Forum) was founded in early 2018 as an interdisciplinary network within the Faculty of Languages, Literature and Culture. The Forum seeks to provide a platform connecting and developing the existing expertise in linguistics at the University and its partners. With its focus on multilingualism and regionalism, FoMuR seeks to strengthen and develop research, teaching and public engagement relating to linguistics and languages.
The Graduate School was a joint programme by LMU Munich and the University of Regensburg in which seven extramural institutions with relevant expertise in studying East and Southeast Europe also participated. From 2012 the Graduate School was funded by the German Research Association (DFG) as a part of the German Federal and State Excellence Initiative. Now, Munich and Regensburg both have a branch of the Graduate School.
The doctoral and postdoctoral research conducted at the Graduate School focuses on the period from around 1800, concentrating on the themes of Basics and Forms of Social and Political Change, Cultural Orders, and Infrastructure, Migration and Transfers of Knowledge. The structured PhD programme and events programme at the Graduate School fosters international exchange and collaboration through workshops, summer schools and lecture series.
The Hungaricum – Ungarisches Institut (HUI) (Hungarian Institute) is supported by the Faculty of Philosophy, Art History, History and Humanities and by the Faculty of Languages, Literature and Culture. As well as organizing events and producing publications, the HUI disseminates and produces knowledge on the language, history, culture, politics, economics and legal system of Hungary past and present.
HUI also organizes the supplementary degree course "Hungaricum" which offers insight into the language and culture of Hungary. The Institute also collaborates on interdisciplinary research projects with other centres based in Regensburg.
The Leibniz Institute for East and Southeast European Studies is one of the largest and longest-standing non-university research institutes in Germany on the region. Its research focuses on interdisciplinary projects working across history, economics and the social and political sciences, while also supporting numerous publication series and journals, doctoral and postdoctoral programmes, guest researcher programmes and event series. Thematically, the research agenda at IOS focuses on Path Dependence, Change and Contingency, the Concept of the Social Institution, and the Relationship Between Continuity and Discontinuity as Guiding Research Perspective.
IOS is also home to one of the largest research libraries on the region.
In collaboration with IOS, CITAS coordinates a Doctoral exchange program with the Institute for European Studies at University of California - Berkeley.
Relations between Europe and both North and South America are currently undergoing dramatic transformations. It is thus all the more important to explore the complex entanglements of multiple regions on both sides of the Atlantic. This is the main objective of the interdisciplinary Leibniz-ScienceCampus “Europe and America in the Modern World”.
The relationship between Europe and America has been constitutive of globalization, its inherent tensions and its fault lines since the late eighteenth century. The research programme of the Regensburg ScienceCampus therefore focuses on the key sites of globalization and resistance to it, such as the tensions between migration and nativism. The Campus thus seeks to contribute to improving understandings of the history of globalization while also tracing current developments in transatlantic relations and encounters.
Following the interdisciplinary approach of contemporary area studies, the Regensburg ScienceCampus brings together researchers from various fields, including history, cultural studies, linguistics, literary studies, economics and the social sciences. A significant feature of the Campus is the extensive international network of partners involved. They are based across North and South America, and Eastern and Western Europe. “Europe and America in the Modern World” will thus work towards making Regensburg a leading centre for transregional area studies.
The Regensburg European American Forum (REAF) was founded in 2008 by the Chair of American Studies, Prof. Dr. Udo Hebel. Since 2013, Prof. Hebel has been President of the University of Regensburg.
REAF is dedicated to transnational American Studies in research and practice, serving as the central international and interdisciplinary platform for collaborative research, academic exchange and cooperation, political intervention, and public outreach in the field of European American Studies at the University of Regensburg.
Drawing on its interest in transnational areas, trajectories, and entanglements, REAF fosters cutting-edge research in European-American relations, interactions, and crossroads and their multifarious historical, cultural, and political dimensions. REAF hosts visiting scholars from all interdisciplinary areas of American Studies and organizes special lectures and conferences with nationally and internationally acclaimed speakers. It supports innovative interdisciplinary BA-, MA-, and PhD-programs in American Studies and European-American Studies with international courses, graduate research roundtables, and an MA / PhD exchange program with the University of Kansas.-->
The Regensburg Corruption Research Cluster was launched in February 2020 with the support of the German Research Foundation (DFG) for the interdisciplinary project “From informality to corruption (1817-2018): Serbia and Croatia in comparison”. Here, three doctoral researchers focus on linguistic, business-related and historical aspects of corruption and informality.
The research cluster also includes further doctoral and postdoctoral projects funded by Bayhost and the EU, respectively.
Corruption is considered one of the central problems of Southeastern Europe on the road to development, stability and European integration. Intensive monitoring, media campaigns and massive institutional imports have been launched over the past 20 years in order to get a grip on the problem – with generally modest results. Our research cluster is tackling the issue in an innovative way. We start from the assumption that while the phenomenon of corruption is universal, concrete societies harbour particular boundaries between legitimate and illegitimate action. International anti-corruption campaigns that ignore this risk falling flat if they do not adequately address the local context and do not seek to connect with local discourses. A region like Southeastern Europe, which has always seen itself as a plaything of foreign powers and their interests, cannot be expected to identify with changes demanded by the European Union and to initiate deep, authentic social change.
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