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Working Groups

Working Groups are entirely organized and managed by researchers with the aim of sharing common interests. There are no specific formulas for these groups and therefore the structure may vary in many ways concerning participation, reading, guest-speakers, etc. Researchers are encouraged to join and set up working groups. They should not only take advantage of helping to contemplate the fields covered by research seminars but also profit from the possibility of peer-to-peer learning and more open and flexible working conditions than can be provided by seminars. 

History and Civilization  

Active since: 2015-2016

As cities loom ever larger in the public, political and academic consciousness, the Cities Working Group aims to function as a laboratory from which to rethink the political, the economic, the social, the cultural, and the intellectual through the lens of the urban. With its base amongst historians working with, through or in cities, the working group aims to use a ‘cities perspective’, a multi-scalar sensitivity and a place-driven agenda to generate new questions in our research. We aim to engage with ideas from the social sciences, critical theory, political science, geography, anthropology and other disciplines, and demonstrate their fruitful interaction with historical perspectives. In this context, the working group is designed to facilitate interaction between disciplinary approaches, drawn together by the eclecticism and inclusivity which the dense, complex spatial frame of the urban demands. We meet regularly with a themed session based upon readings, media resources and personal experiences, complemented by presentations delivered by members of the working group. We are also aiming to develop workshops, lectures and events, involving researchers and staff from the EUI, as well as further afield. Finally we hope to situate our thoughts, reflections and research in the city of Firenze, as an urban environment, a social-political entity, and a civic space. Faculty liaison: Jorge Flores, Luca Molà and Stéphane Van Damme Coordinators: Pablo Hernández Sau, Nicholas Mithen, Nazli Songülen

History and Civilization  

Active since: 2014-2015

Our working group on economic history and history of economic ideas (EHIWG) aims to bring together young and senior researchers working on economic history and related disciplines. In particular, it aims to foster the dialogue between early-modern and modern historians, intellectual historians, economists and all scholars interested in economic questions. Our topics range from – but are not confined to – economic development, the interaction between market structures and society, globalization, financial crises and inequality, to merchant networks, business elites and the origins of political economy. The group organizes student-run seminars and events with external speakers, encouraging the participation of students and scholars who wish to present their on-going research to a friendly audience of peers. Faculty liaison: Youssef Cassis Coordinators: Maria Stella Chiaruttini and Gertjan Schutte

History and Civilization  Law  

Active since: 2017-2018

The EU is currently going through a very hard moment: Euroscepticism is spreading and citizens feel distant from the European project. This is why this group aims to "open the doors" of the Institute and connect the EUI with civil society at large. As is well known, civil society and academia are usually considered distant worlds, which often do not speak the same language and with very few things to share. Nonetheless, we believe that our initiative would pursue the twofold objective of making civil society benefit from EUI researchers' skills and knowledge, and providing young engaged academics - from every department - with a “civil society perspective” on their research topics. In practice, the purpose of this WG is thus to organize public debates, conferences and roundtables with citizens, local associations, schools and other institutions on the current challenges that the EU is facing (migration, social policy, gender equality issues, environmental and human rights protection, etc.). For starting, we aim at working "locally", therefore to be a member of the WG a decent level of Italian would be required. However, this will not prevent our WG from going beyond Tuscany or Italy in the future. The working group is thankful for the generous support of Prof. Federico Romero (History department).

History and Civilization  

Active since: 2014-2015

The History of Science Working Group has a broad scope, encompassing all aspects of the history of knowledge and science from the early modern period through to the contemporary world. Our discussions focus on the emergence, circulation and uses of knowledge in different places and contexts. We aim to explore traditional and new approaches, critically reviewing them in the light of our own research projects and using them to stimulate discussion on theoretical, methodological and practical issues. We hold informal monthly meetings which function as a “laboratory” to share and try out your work in progress and get feedback from other researchers. We will also be continuing our tradition of the “(Bring your own) Coffee with Historians” series where we will engage with invited scholars throughout the year, including Bruno Latour (Sciences Po, Paris) and Dagmar Schaffer (Max Planck Institut, Berlin). In the past, we have also organised excursions to places in Florence related to the group members interests, such as the Museo Galileo and the Biblioteca Nazionale. We also hope to expand our blog this year to provide researchers with an opportunity to communicate their research. Faculty liaison: Stéphane Van Damme Coordinators: Louis Le Douarin, Camille Sallé

History and Civilization  

Active since: 2016-2017

Since the 1960s the traditional field of imperial history has undergone significant evolution, especially in the wake of wider historiographical developments including the cultural turn and the challenges of post-structuralism. Scholars have delivered significant critiques of the more traditional economic and political/diplomatic perspectives on empire. New ideas about gender and race relations, the relationship between metropole and colony and the dissemination of knowledge have transformed the field. Importantly, Saidian and other theories have problematized imperial historians’ reliance on colonial archives. The Imperial History Working Group brings together researchers working on various manifestations of imperialism and (post-)colonialism in the modern world to engage with these developments and the ways in which they influence our work. Imperial history is often practiced in institutional environments that are regionally, and often nationally, focused. The EUI, on the contrary, brings together scholars of colonialism and imperialism who work on very diverse geographical spaces. The Imperial History Working Group aims to bring into dialogue researchers who are interested in deepening their understanding of imperial history across regional specializations. Faculty liaison: Corinna Unger Coordinators: Kirsten Kamphuis and Bastiaan Nugteren

History and Civilization  

Active since: 2014-2015

Since intellectual history is nowadays associated with a wide range of methodologies and practices, historical periods, and research topics, it lacks a clearly defined institutional identity. These differences form the starting point of this working group, which aims to function as a platform to discuss historical research and methods that can be associated with the intellectual historian as an ‘eavesdropper on the past’, to use the words of John Burrow, ranging from the Early-modern period to the present. It welcomes disagreement and dialogue on the practice, theory, and limits of intellectual history. The working group organizes meetings with visiting scholars, workshops, and lectures. The group meets every two weeks, and the meetings usually consist of an introductory presentation and a general discussion. Please check the webpage of the working group. Faculty liaison: Ann Thomson Coordinators: Annelie Grosse, Nicholas Mithen, Henning Schuler, Gertjan Schutte

History and Civilization  Law  Political and Social Sciences  

Active since: 2016-2017

After two centuries of formal independence from European imperial powers, Latin America is no longer regarded as a “recipient” of ideas, but as a region generating its own objectives and developing its own path. In the last decades, it has experienced extensive economic growth, and has gone through complex and unique processes of democratization and transitional justice, as well as regional integration. A product of intricate historical realities, Latin America is still challenged by high rates of inequality and poverty, occurrence of State’s and non-State actors’ violence, non-democratic practices, and discrimination based on gender and race. The Latin America Working Group is the forum of reflection on Latin American topics at the European University Institute. It holds seminars and workshops where researchers can discuss their work on an interdisciplinary basis. Through its informal talks and its blog, the working group promotes informed reflection on current Latin American issues. On top of this, the working group is a network of current and former EUI researchers, as well as external researchers, working in connection with Latin America. Faculty liaison: Regina Grafe (HEC) and Philippe Schmitter (SPS). Coordinators: Leiry Cornejo Chavez (LAW), Ileana Nicolau (SPS), Paula Zuluaga (SPS), and Gaël Sánchez Cano (HEC)

History and Civilization  Law  

Active since: 2017-2018

LGBTI and queer studies working group aims to provide an environment for discussions on different issues related to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer people. We plan to discuss papers written by EUI researchers, exchange thoughts on queer theory and occasionally invite guest speakers. Researchers studying gender and sexuality from historical, political, sociological, legal and economic perspectives are warmly welcomed to attend our meetings and present their ideas. We would be pleased to see at our events members of the EUI LGBTI community, for we would like to maintain a link between academic studies and the social groups in question. Coordinators: Uladzimir Valodzin (HEC), Kamil Karczewski (HEC) and Giovanna Gilleri (LAW). Liaison professor: Pieter Judson.

History and Civilization  Law  Max Weber Programme  Political and Social Sciences  

Active since: 2015-2016

The Nationalism Working Group is an interdisciplinary framework for the discussion of current research projects in the fields of nationalism as well as the most recent developments in the scholarly assessment of the complex problem of nationalism. We intend to cover theoretical and conceptual problems of nationalist movements, sub state nationalism, citizenship, colonialism and anti-colonial movements, diaspora nationalism, nationalist ideology and indifference, and many other fields and problems in past and in present. We encourage the participation of students and scholars who intend to present their research and want to engage in the discussion of this critical concept. The group meets roughly once a month. Faculty liaison: Pieter M. Judson Coordinator: Benoit Vaillot (HEC)

History and Civilization  

Active since: 2017-2018

The Political History Working Group (PHWG) is an open platform to address Early Modern and Modern political history, with special attention paid to the juncture between these two: the so-called long 19th century (1750-1917). The main goal of this working group is to address new perspectives and methodologies of researching political history, discussing about them and enrichening our historiographical approach. Some of the topics to be approached and discussed are political cultures (and cultural approaches to politics), identities (with a special focus on gender, class and nationalism), politicization, state-building, social control and revolutions, all of them addressed mainly with a from-below perspective. Coordinators: Ignacio García de Paso and Stefano Poggi. Faculty liaison: Lucy Riall

History and Civilization  Political and Social Sciences  

Active since: 2016-2017

Czesław Miłosz once labeled Russia as “a big void to the East”. The task of our group is to respond to this void by sharing the ideas and expertise across the departments of the EUI. We are interested in everything that we see in geographical, temporal, or ideological proximity to the history of the Soviet Union and politics of post-Soviet Eurasia. From empires to nation-states, from everyday life to power politics, and from Finland to Central Asia to Cuba - we appreciate any comparative studies that put socialist and post-socialist experiences into a broader context. The group is interdepartmental, and scholars from economics, sociology, history and political science are warmly invited. As a part of Soviet and Post-Soviet Working Group we also discuss various Jewish experiences in Europe (predominantly in 19th and 20th centuries). We aim to assess modern Jewish politics in Central/Eastern Europe as well as the impacts imperial and national developments had for the Jewish population of the region. We are especially welcoming comparative and transnational approaches. Coordinator: Maryna Batsman (HEC), Philipp Chapkovskiy (SPS) and Bohdan Shumylovych (HEC) Faculty Liaison: Alexander Etkind

 

To set up a new working group, please contact the Departmental Coordinator Anna Coda.

A Working Group wishing to organize a workshop or to invite an external speaker should be aware that funding may not be available. In order to start planning an event it is necessary to:

  1. draft a preliminary description of the project
  2. inform the Departmental Coordinator who will put you in contact with the administrative assistant in charge
  3. ask the liaison professor and others for financial contributions.

Note that the main bulk of the logistics of the workshop remains with the working group members, although the administrative assistant can provide support in drafting a budget, liaising with the catering service etc.

 

Page last updated on 30 August 2017