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Department of Economics


Lukas Nord1.

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

 Answer: What distinguishes the EUI as a truly great place to study are its people. They come from different countries and backgrounds and they all have a story to tell. The fact that the EUI is small, in comparison with most other top-level universities, makes it easy to get in touch with everyone, including the faculty. It creates a unique spirit of community and an ideal environment for lively discussions about anything and everything. While the first year of any Ph.D. in Economics is demanding, everything is easier when you have friends by your side.

And where better to enjoy a well-deserved aperitivo, after a hard day’s work, than in the picturesque Tuscan hills around Florence?

 Lukas Nord, EUI Department of Economics researcher, from Germany
 

 

My Hedlin1.

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

 Answer: Doing your Ph.D. in Economics, at the EUI in Florence, will combine the challenge of a good – and therefore demanding – Ph.D. programme with a department remarkable for its family-like atmosphere. The small size of the faculty means continuous interaction between both professors and students of different fields, and the absence of bachelor and master students yields a strong and rewarding focus on research. 

 My Hedlin, EUI Department of Economics researcher, from Sweden
 

Natalie Kessler

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

Answer: My first year as an economics PhD at the EUI has been blood, sweat and tears, but also Aperol and gelato in the sun, many social hours spent at the student bar and more than one coffee at the Badia canteen terrace overlooking Florence. The first year as an economist researcher is challenging with ten mandatory courses and several electives, which will ensure a well-rounded foundation for future research. The hard work (approx. 80-100 hours a week) is however, rewarded with an international academic environment amongst like-minded and ambitious coworkers across the different fields in social sciences at the institute. 

Natalie Kessler, EUI Department of Economics reseacher, from Germany
 

 

Department of History and Civilization


RachelTrode

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

 Answer: To a new researcher I would say, that while it is important to have goals and maintain momentum, the PhD is more than producing a thesis in four-year’s time. The structure of the History and Civilization program and the financial stability EUI provides allows you to take the time to broaden and deepen your understanding of the discipline. Talk with your fellow researchers and be open to learning about other sub-fields. It is these experiences that allow you to continuously examine your own work in a new light. Ultimately, this pushes you to become a better researcher. 

Rachel Trode, EUI Department of History and Civilization researcher, from Canada
 

 

TomasIvesiz.Cropped

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

 Answer: I first visited the EUI, when I was participating in the HEC department’s summer school. It was in those five days that I knew I wanted to pursue my Ph.D. in Florence. EUI’s History department is well known in international academia and has great professors that offer close supervision and engaging seminars.

Of the many things I enjoy at the EUI, I would point out the excellent Library and the Language Centre, the numerous opportunities to meet new scholars at conferences and guest lectures organized throughout the academic year and the variety of extracurricular activities. These factors make the EUI a perfect place to do a Ph.D. I am convinced that new researchers will discover this already at the beginning of their doctoral journey in Florence.

Tomaz Ivesic, EUI Department of History and Civilization researcher, from Slovenia
 

 

Elena Rizzi

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their own EUI experience?

Answer: Your first-year is incredibly enriching. Your research will evolve in many and, sometimes, unexpected directions thanks to seminars, meetings with your supervisor and other members of the faculty, and fellow researchers. Furthermore, thanks to your first- and second-year seminars, you will become more confident in sharing your ideas with others. There is a great collaborative research culture.

The EUI is an outstanding place to study. Invited speakers from different parts of the world that visit to give talks and lectures enrich the intellectual atmosphere here. Make the most of these opportunities!

My last advice: take the chance to learn new languages and practice them on a daily basis with your friends! And never miss a stunning sunset over the Tuscan hills!

 Elena Rizzi, EUI Department of History and Civilization researcher, from Italy
 

 

Luise Elsaesser2.

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

Answer: The international community of the EUI, in the green hills surrounding Florence, is truly unique, especially during times when populism is growing ever stronger, endangering the European idea. The EUI is not only creating a productive working environment for its Ph.D. researchers but is also enforcing a dialogue that does not know national boundaries. The huge web of expertise and competence coming together here, at the EUI,  is forming a solid knot on which one can grow personally and professionally. And, further aiding this, the EUI offers multiple opportunities for you to build up networks and make new friendships.

Luise Elsaesser, EUI Department of History and Civilization researcher, from Germany
 

 

GeronimakiKalliopi_Cropped

Looking back on the first year of your EUI experience, how has it changed you?

Answer: Studying at the EUI in the past year has transformed my vision of the world hundreds of times. The EUI doctoral programme in History & Civilization has opened for me a horizon of infinite intellectual voyages. During the seminars, conferences and in everyday life at the EUI, I have come across people from all over the world and reflected on different views of historical thinking. While working on the first drafts of my thesis, I have constantly received the valuable support of my supervisors and colleagues. This solidarity has helped me to transform this lonely work into a fruitful and creative process. The contact with new sources, new languages and new people has influenced the character of my work and paved my future steps in and out of the academic world.

Kalliopi Geronymaki, EUI Department of History and Civilization researcher, from Greece
 

 

Department of Law


Matilda Merenmies3.

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

 Answer: I think the best part of doing a Ph.D. at the EUI is the active academic and social community. It’s easy to find engaging conversation and feedback for research, plus lively debates on broader topics. There are so many interesting seminars and talks, if you participated in everything you’d never have time for your own work!

The fact that there’s a cohort of researchers starting their Ph.D. at the same time creates good ground for peer support, something that is often missing for other institutions. At the EUI, it’s always really easy to invite peers or inspiring visiting scholars for a coffee and exchange ideas. It can be intimidating to move to a foreign country but the EUI offers a wonderful environment for meeting amazing colleagues and making great friends too.  

Matilda Merenmies, EUI Department of Law researcher, from Finland
 

 

XiaohangChen_Cropped

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

Answer: The transnational and interdisciplinary background of the EUI makes it a distinctive place for young researchers to explore and cultivate various academic interests and personal potentials. The EUI provides a highly tolerant and welcoming environment for different ideas, disciplines and approaches. Seminars are thoughtfully organized and systematically structured. As a researcher working on international legal history, the Ph.D. programme of the Law Department enables me to intensively involve in my own project, and the seminars offered by other departments such as the History Department acquaint me with different methodological toolkits, through which I gradually come to see my topic more sharply. 

Xiaohang Chen, EUI Department of Law researcher, from China
 

 

Dima Hussain

Looking back on the first year of your EUI experience, how has it changed you?

Answer: I can now see how much confidence I gained as an academic, during my first year at the EUI. It was a year of shaping my theoretical knowledge and writing. I was able to challenge my own ideas and perceptions through reading and discussion with my supervisor and fellow researchers. The EUI is the perfect venue to meet people from all over the world and exchange ideas. Sometimes such conversations, even with somebody from another discipline, make you look at your subject with different eyes, and take you to the next level of your work.

My first year helped me narrow down my topic and start thinking about the possibilities of my field of research and work. It ensured I have a more realistic project, plus clearer goals to focus on in the coming years.

 Dima Hussain, EUI Department of Law researcher, from Syria
 

 

TianyingSong_Cropped

Looking back on the first-year of your EUI experience, how has it changed you?

Answer: I have a lot of flexibility to plan my research, so I know I am on track, thanks to the clear, progressive framework of the EUI Ph.D. programme. My Department emphasises peer exchange and quality supervision, so I have also benefited from many open-minded discussions during the past year. And I am always amazed at how up-to-date the library is when I look for a new book!

Overall, I feel the EUI provides a very conscious, efficient, and professional community. Then, just when you think it cannot get better, you are in the great city of Florence! I feel inspired by the culture, history and art there, when I temporarily leave my studies and step outside. 

Tianying Song, EUI Department of Law researcher, from China
 

 

Department of Political and Social Sciences


JasperSimons2

Looking back on the first year of your EUI experience, how has it changed you?

 Answer: When I came to Florence I just finished a two-year period after my graduation in which I tried out several different jobs. I experienced the civil service, the private sector and university teaching. These positions were great but did not provide complete fulfilment. At the EUI, I got exactly what I was looking for. Not merely doing research about something I am passionate about, but also the possibilities the EUI offers and the atmosphere around the campus and in Florence. The interaction with the professors and fellow students have improved my competences and enriched me socially. I wake up here with a sense of enthusiasm about the thought-provoking discussions, fun aperitivi and exciting stories I will hear. What more could I possibly wish for?  

Jasper Paul Simons, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from The Netherlands
 

 

DariaGlukhova_Cropped

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their own EUI experience?

Answer: When I applied for an EUI Ph.D., I saw it as a great opportunity but it was not until during my first year here that I appreciated what a fantastic environment it is. The EUI is not just academic experiences and learning processes that expose you to topics and developments in your discipline. It is also, and perhaps crucially, about meeting people that inspire you daily, making friends that stimulate your thinking, suddenly seeing the world from a different perspective, and making a breakthrough in your project while enjoying a coffee overlooking the Florentine landscape.

With everything organised and tailored for Ph.D. researchers, the EUI offers the support and attention for any circumstances, so you never feel alone. All of this provides a wonderful university experience and makes me look forward to getting up to the Badia every day.

Daria Glukhova, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from Russia
 

 

AdamKrzykowski

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

Answer: A Career in social and political sciences, as well as in other fields, is a constant way uphill. In this context, the PhD programme at EUI appears as a steep, though joyful climb. The Tuscan hills surrounding Florence are an astonishing place, where paths of many outstanding academics meet, creating a unique environment for free thinkers to challenge their views, beliefs and approaches. Every single day, the community of excellent Professors and colleagues stimulates me to perform high-quality and politically relevant research, which hopefully will not end up only in the Institute’s archives. 

Adam Krzykowski, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from Poland
 

 

MarioSpiezio

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

Answer: The beginning of the Ph.D. can bring about mixed feelings. On one hand, you will certainly be happy to start working on your own project. On the other hand, you may feel anxious given that you will have to fulfil institutional requirements and meet expectations of your supervisor. Balancing these feelings, I believe, is key to successful progress from the first year to the second, and onward.

Further, reading, analyzing data, and carrying out interviews etc. are great learning opportunities on their own beyond their instrumental value for the completion of the Phd. Last but not least, remember that Phd entails trial and error. The mistakes you do on the way of course will disappoint you, but they will also you push to find alternative solutions, test different hypotheses, and integrate different perspectives into your work. Therefore, enjoy the journey. 

 Mario Spiezio, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from Italy
 

 

OfraKlein_Cropped

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their EUI experience?

My first year at EUI has been a great one. The testimonials of my colleagues already stated the benefits of studying at the EUI - the food, friends and views  - but these do not seem to do justice to the many other great advantages the EUI has to offer. I feel fortunate to spend four years at this truly European institution and would recommend anyone who wants to pursue a PhD to apply here.

Ofra Klein, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from The Netherlands
 

 

Vicente Valentim.

Looking back on the first year of your EUI experience, how has it changed you?

Answer: Studying at the EUI has been a unique experience. Three aspects, in particular, have allowed me to improve my academic skills so far. In the first place, the full immersion into a friendly community of leading scholars and engaged researchers from many different backgrounds, which provides a permanent intellectual challenge and ensures the establishment of lifelong connections and friendships. Moreover, the fact that a Ph.D. at the EUI is fully-funded allows one to concentrate on research with no need to stress about how to finance it. Finally, the consistent feedback one receives on one’s research project immensely improves its quality, while pushing you towards developing your critical thinking and academic abilities.  

 Vicente Valentim, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from Portugal
 

 

JohannesRothe

What would you say to a new researcher, about to start their own EUI experience?

Answer: The EUI is a great place to write a Ph.D. and provides a stimulating environment. The institution has impressive resources and services at your disposal to support you, for example various methods seminars and workshops. The sense of community is clear academically, but also socially.

Yet, as advice to incoming researchers, I would say that there can be so much more to your EUI experience than just the EUI itself. You will have the opportunity to explore Florence and Tuscany, to learn Italian, and to make friends outside the EUI. Your experience will be even richer if you do this. Plus it will help you to ground yourself during those days when writing a PhD can seem more like a chore than a treat!

Johannes Rothe, EUI Department of Political and Social Sciences researcher, from Germany
 

 

Page last updated on 09 November 2018