First steps of the CRC 228: Opening symposium, stakeholder workshop and a visit from the German president

On April 9th, 2018, the CRC „Future Rural Africa – Future-making and social-ecological transformation” was officially launched. Numerous guests from scientific institutions and development organisations attended the opening symposium at the University Club Bonn. The event was followed by a two-day stakeholder workshop in Namibia in May 2018 where insights from discussions with local researchers and stakeholders added to the work program of the project over the course of the first phase (photo 1).

Another special event followed in June, when the CRC participated in the public-visiting day of the “Villa Hammerschmidt” in Bonn, the residence of the President of Germany. With an exhibition tent, the CRC team was able to present the project to the public as well as to the German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife Elke Büdenbender (photo 2).

Over the course of the summer term we held project meetings and jour fixe meetings on a regular basis to discuss research challenges, receive input from each other and share thoughts on both the actual work and related theoretical insights and thoughts derived from relevant literature. These meetings were especially important for the project’s junior researchers, who started their preparatory field work after attending the CRC 228 inception workshop and summer school (photo 3), which took place in Nairobi between August 30th and September 5th at the NMK and the British Institute along with a compulsory driver training.

Frank Walter
Photo 2: Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife receiving information on the CRC by Prof. Dr. Detlef Müller-Mahn at Villa Hammerschmidt in June 2018. (Photo Credit: CRC)

The ongoing CRC lecture series offers the opportunity to engage with contemporary research, covering a variety of topics from case studies on migration and resettlement to historical aspects of future studies. Our invited guest speakers come from different regional, theoretical, and disciplinary backgrounds to allow for a comprehensive addition to our own research interests and topics. So far, seven lectures followed by fruitful discussions among the participants took place in both Bonn and Cologne that share the host duties of the jour fixe and lecture series events.

The CRC team is now looking forward to the first 3-day retreat, which will take place this month. It will offer the opportunity not only to plan further project activities but also to engage deeply with ongoing research plans. The year will be closed with a lecture on land acquisitions in the Global South as part of the CRC Lecture series on December 17th. Please find an abstract in the respective section on this website and: you\’re warmly invited to join us!

Nairobi Workshop
Photo 3: PhD. Workshop in Nairobi (Photo Credit: CRC)

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