WWU Fellowship Initiative Receives EU COFUND Funding
The fellowship programme "Migration, Diaspora, Citizenship" (MDC), a unique collaboration between ten faculties at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität (WWU) Münster, will receive one million euros from the European Union (EU). As the highest-ranking project with top marks (100%), the MDC initiative is one of only two programmes nationwide that have been selected for the “COFUND Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA)”. In line with the funding requirements, the programme is co-financed by the WWU.
The aim of Münster’s COFUND programme is to promote the international mobility and career development of postdoctoral researchers and professors from around the world who wish to enhance their expertise in the interdisciplinary fields of migration, diaspora, and citizenship studies while connecting and collaborating with other academics and practitioners as well as the general public. Over a five-year period, the programme will offer two-year and six-month research stays in Münster. A total of nine postdoctoral fellows and eight senior fellows will benefit from the initiative.
“Our fellows will tackle far-reaching social, cultural, political and economic challenges, which are gaining renewed relevance and urgency in Europe,” says Prof. Dr. Klaus Stierstorfer, who initiated the proposal. While the reasons for migration are manifold and show great variation regionally and over time, the numbers of people on the move are steadily increasing. This development gives rise to new transnational forms of social and cultural belonging (e.g. in diasporic communities) that cannot be grasped with traditional concepts of national citizenship. Research on these issues requires not only international and interdisciplinary collaboration but also knowledge exchange with non-academic actors and organizations. Accordingly, the WWU will cooperate with 17 universities and non-academic partner organisations from around the world, which will participate in events in Münster and host fellows during secondments.
The project is closely intertwined with the university’s strategies for knowledge transfer and human resource development, and it strengthens the network and collaboration between the humanities and social sciences in Münster, which have cooperated in several other interdisciplinary research projects and a network of graduate schools called smartNETWORK.