25 students from 13 countries all around the world, among them Brazil, India, Canada, the US, Cyprus, Belgium or Georgia, were guests in Würzburg from July 27th to August 4th, 2017, to participate in the 3rd International IPS Summer School German Politics.
The seminar dealt with topics like federalism, voting behaviour, parliamentary work, as well as German foreign and European policy. The program was completed by multiple workshops and a debate with the candidate for the German Bundestag, Martin Heilig. The Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD students contributed their different perspectives, expertise and previous knowledge about Germany to the discussion.
This lively culture led to inspired debates, for example concerning the rise of populist parties, the prospects of the European Union, refuge and asylum in Germany as well as the main theme: the Bundestag elections. At last, the students’ essays submitted prior to the Summer School were a major contribution to that topic.
As the final workshop clarified, a lot of new things were learned, perspectives were broadened, new friendships were formed, new impulses were set and questions were raised among the participants.
The free time of the students was not only used to gain a cultural impression of Germany, but also to discuss these questions outside class. The evening program was at least as interesting as the seminars: The visit of Fortress Marienberg and the Würzburg City Hall as well as the intercultural city tour was followed by a wine tasting at the Residenzkeller where the students could exchange their impressions with the students of the Faculty of Business Management and Economics who joined them for this event. On Sunday, the whole group headed to Nuremberg for a guided tour through the historical centre and a visit to the Documentation Centre Nazi Party Rally Grounds. Furthermore, the student assistants enabled the broad leisure activities after the seminar program, such as a trip to the match of football club 1. FC Nürnberg.
With Anja Zürn and Manuel Pietzko, two IPS members of faculty were organizing this year’s summer school. Funding by the Human Dynamics Centre of the Faculty of Human Sciences and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research enabled the realization of the Summer School. A special thanks to all the participating lecturers whose varied talks mainly contributed to the success of the Summer School.