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Anthropology: MLU participates in new Max Planck Research School

Nummer 064/2023 vom 05. Juni 2023
The Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology (MPI), together with Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), the University of Leipzig and Friedrich Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, is founding the International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) "Global Multiplicity. A Social Anthropology for the Now". The IMPRS will initially run for six years and will accept up to 40 doctoral students. It will be one of the largest offers for the structured training of doctoral students in the field of social anthropology in Europe. The spokesperson of the IMPRS is Prof. Dr Ursula Rao, Managing Director of the MPI and honorary professor at MLU and the University of Leipzig.

Professor Asta Vonderau, Professor Anita von Poser and Professor Dr. Olaf Zenker from the Department of Ethnology as well as legal scholar Professor Dirk Hanschel are participating on behalf of the University of Halle. The topics of the research school respond to the current challenges faced by people around the world: climate change, environmental destruction, and species extinction; health crises; social inequality and the legacies of colonial rule; geopolitical tensions, nationalism, wars and civil wars. The vehemence and simultaneity of these phenomena has resulted in an increased sense of crisis everywhere in the world. "This leads to a prolonged, intensive debate about what these changes mean, how to shape the future, and who bears the responsibility for doing so", Rao explains. While investigating processes of societal change and transformation has always been a key concern of the social sciences, there is still much that is not yet known about how reactions to current global transformations differ regionally and how they influence one another. The IMPRS doctoral students will therefore dedicate themselves to investigating the strategies and paradigms that people are developing to grapple with the challenges of the present.

The International Max Planck Research Schools are an integral part of the Max Planck Society’s commitment to creating excellent conditions for the next generation of researchers. The schools enable exceptional young scholars to pursue a doctorate within the context of a structured graduate programme that includes a wide range of training formats and opportunities, from research seminars to soft skills workshops. A particular feature of the schools is the integration of their members in international networks and debates, as well as the close cooperation between the host Max Planck Institute and one or more universities. The focus is on conducting independent research on an interdisciplinary topic leading to the completion of a dissertation. In addition, the doctoral students benefit from regular opportunities to exchange views and discuss ideas at workshops, summer schools, or conferences.



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