It has been an unusual year thus far: exciting, but also incredibly rewarding. Two last things are making me busy for the rest of the time that is left before the holiday season.
The first one is a Winter School in Oslo. The theme is “Mapping knowledge economies” and it is offered under the UNIKE project. UNIKE, which is Universities in the Knowledge Economy, is run collaboratively by six universities under prof. Susan Wright from Aarhus University, and aims to investigate current challenges for the universities in Europe and on the Asia-Pacific rim. The current winter school has been offered with the support of University of Oslo, to UNIKE fellows, their supervisors, partners and just two external participants (one of which is he who writes it now). The program is really intensive, includes discussion of research projects, debates, workshops on academic mobility and policy briefing as well as discussions on doctoral education. The opportunity to have a talk with extraordinary people, including renowned scholars as Peter Maassen, Chris Newfield, Davydd Greenwood (pictured), Pavel Zgaga and António Magalhães, as well as numerous promising early stage researchers, was an incredible intellectual experience.
In two weeks, I will be in the Netherlands, where I plan to continue my liberal education study by visiting university colleges in Maastricht and Leiden, as well as finally meeting prof. Hans Adriaansens. Then I will attend International Human Rights Education Conference. As the running theme is, quite properly, “Translating Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms to Today’s World”, Iw would present a paper on how universities in several European countries are helping the refugees – and why they should care more about taking real action. Returning to Middleburg is a wonderful vision as I truly find this little Zeeland city academically charming in many ways.
After that, I plan to really take some time off – and look back at this wonderful year. Then I can plan some new adventures.