Research in times of multiple crises? Challenges and Research Perspectives for Eastern European Studies

At the beginning of June 2023, about 20 academics of all qualification levels met at the Martin Luther University in Halle (MLU) to discuss the effects of the multiple crises of the recent past on their respective research processes. The workshop „Research in times of multiple crises? Challenges and Research Perspectives for Eastern European Studies“ was organised by Lisa Füchte, Corinne Geering, Sven Jaros, Anne Kluger, Laura Krebs, Elisa Satjukow and Marie Schwarz. The format was supported by the Leibniz Institute for the History and Culture of Eastern Europe (GWZO), the MLU with the Aleksander-Brückner Centre for Polish Studies, the Leibniz ScienceCampus “Eastern Europe – Global Area” (EEGA), the VOH and the DGO.

The workshop in Halle was divided into three parts. The first block dealt with the specific challenges that the participants face when working on their research projects. These were asked in advance and clustered. At three World Café tables, the participants were able to discuss the topics of access to ar-chives, access to the field and political framework conditions and clarify where there are obstacles and a need for discussion and where they would like to receive help. In the second block, perspectives for solving these difficulties were presented. For this purpose, the organisers had invited experts who, based on their respective expertise and field of work, were able to point out alternatives for research and data collection. In the third and last block, the challenges met the perspectives. At three further World Café tables, the participants had extensive discussions with the experts and explored together how the respective possibilities could be applied to the specific research of the participants and what further needs there might be for this.

The workshop opened up an important space for exchange. A more in-depth continuation of many of the points raised is planned within the framework of the Young DGO. Young researchers are particularly affected by the poor funding, the insecure employment conditions in academia and its strong hierarchical, sometimes even discriminatory structures. Discussions about everyday challenges, about individual research processes, the respective teaching experiences and the shared enthusiasm for East Central and Eastern European studies give strength and encourage the decision to continue (for the time being) in academia.

Read the full conference report in English and German.

You can get some photographic impressions in our picture gallery: