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CfA: “Making Sense of Turbulent Times,” The 2024 Spring School

By December 14, 2023March 4th, 2024No Comments

The Europaeum 2024 Spring School: Making Sense of Turbulent Times

University of Oxford, 17th – 20th April 2024 (with an alumni day on 20th April)

The twenty-first century has often seemed to be an Age of Crisis. 9/11, Iraq, Afghanistan, the Global Financial Crisis, the Eurozone crisis, Avian Flu, Swine Flu, Covid-19, the Climate Emergency, Libya, Syria, Ukraine, Gaza: the list of potentially defining moments de nos jours is very long. So much so that it might now make sense to think of our times less in terms of endless rolling crises and turning points than of turbulence – a constant state of motion or commotion in which what’s going on around us is always buffeting all of us about.

In history, as in politics and plane travel, turbulence is generally seen negatively – a thing to be contrasted with tranquillity or a stable equilibrium. But in science turbulence can be positive – that rough flow of air which makes our plane trip possible, circulates heat and, in the end, is essential to the existence of all life of earth.

If turbulence is a natural state of affairs, then it is not just a threat but also an opportunity. The question then is how to incorporate it into our models for understanding society. Engineers have long known their inability to model or control turbulent flows can lead to inefficient over-design. Might it not do something similar in policymaking or in Humanities and Social Sciences? Resources that emancipate us from Time’s imagined linearity– the source of crisis rhetoric in modern discourse – have never been more important. We need to explore how to get used to the “bumpy ride”.

This Europaeum Spring School will bring together master’s and doctoral researchers in Humanities and Social Sciences subjects to explore themes related to turbulence in European history, politics, society, or economic or cultural production from a diachronic and/or multidisciplinary perspective.

We invite applications from master’s and doctoral candidates at Europaeum member universities who wish either (1) to present a 15-minute paper based on their research or  (2) just to join the discussions. We especially welcome proposals for papers addressing the theme of turbulence in relation to the following topics:

  • War and conflict
  • Politics and elections
  • News, information, and media
  • Demographics and migration
  • Health humanities

Participants will join lively working groups during the event and hear from experts in their field such as Leo Lucassen (Leiden University), Dina Gusejnova (LSE), and Myroslava Gongadze (Voice of America). Those not presenting a paper will be allocated a role as discussant to kick-start Q&A sessions following on from presentations. Successful applicants will be provided with free accommodation and reimbursed reasonable travel expenses.

How to apply 

Applications should include the Europaeum application form, a brief CV, a statement of purpose (up to 500 words), and a reference letter from their supervisor or academic advisor. Those who wish to submit a paper should also add a short abstract of the proposed paper (up to 500 words).

For more information about how to apply visit:

Click here for the Rules for Participating in Europaeum events.

Deadline for submission of applications and abstracts: 21st January 2024.


All submissions should be sent to