Summer School - Governance at the ‘edge’ of the state? The Spaces of Violent Rule, 12-14 September 2016, Switzerland

Publish Date: Apr 06, 2016

Deadline: May 15, 2016

Event Dates: from Sep 12, 2016 12:00 to Sep 14, 2016 12:00

The Department of Geography at the University of Zürich, Department of Food and Resource Economics at the University of Copenhagen, and the Conflict Research Group at Ghent University organize a three-day PhD and postdoctoral course at the University of Zurich on 12-14 September 2016 with the title Governance at the ‘edge’ of the state? The spaces of violent rule. This course is the third in a series of summer schools that explore multiple forms of governance at the edge of the state. But what does it exactly mean to be at the ‘edge’ of the state, or in the state’s ‘margins’? What spatial form does politics take where state government is actively challenged by arguably more localized or globalized power assemblages? And how can a more informed spatial vocabulary (about e.g. territories, scales and networks) help us unravel some of the longer lasting transformations of contemporary globalization processes taking place in part, but not exclusively, in the ‘global South’? To explore the ‘edges’ of the state requires an explicit geographical critique of the crucial mechanisms of government, which, arguably, continue to take place outside of, in competition with or alongside official government. Questions around the geographic reconfiguration of situated social practice, as well as the changing conjunctures of existing spatial orders have gradually reshaped our understanding about the modern ‘nation-state’, the ‘local’ and the ‘global’ (e.g. through the active politics of bordering, brokering and territorialization). Starting from a deliberate focus on the geographies of violent political rule, scholars from different disciplines have started identifying the changing meaning of place and space in today’s globalized (dis)order.

This course responds to a growing demand from graduate students and early career researchers who are developing their thesis within this new field of research. It aims to bring together PhD and postdoctoral students from the social sciences and humanities with some of the key scholars propagating these debates. Combining the methodological and conceptual expertise of three excellent research groups and a growing network of affiliated scholars, it aims at better understanding the complex relations between space, place and government in the margins of contemporary globalization processes.

Through a series of lectures, panel discussions as well as an in-depth mentoring of student’s research papers, the course provides a key opportunity not only for students to present and discuss their work with senior researchers, but also to further the debate in this emerging field. Specifically, the learning objectives of the course are:

• Students have an increased awareness about the interconnectedness of place, space and government in contemporary globalization

• Students have engaged in discussions on methodological and conceptual approaches as well as on innovative theoretical and comparative case study work in their research field

• Students are able to critically assess their own and others’ work in this research field and deliver constructive criticism to their peers Programme There will be daily lectures by senior experts and parallel working group sessions with in-depth discussions of the participants’ research papers. A detailed program will be communicated shortly after approval of your application. Tutors (alphabetical order)

• Dr. Muriel Côte, University of Zürich

• Associate professor Michael Eilenberg, Aarhus University

• Associate professor Tobias Hagmann, University of Roskilde

• Professor Benedikt Korf, University of Zürich

• Professor Christian Lund, University of Copenhagen

• Professor Kate Meagher, London School of Economics

• Professor Andrea Nightingale, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

• Dr Timothy Raeymaekers, University of Zürich

• Professor Shalini Randeria, Graduate Institute, Geneva; Institute for Human Science, Vienna

• Professor Koen Vlassenroot, University of Ghent

• Professor Michael Watts, UC Berkeley

• Professor Wendy Wolford, Cornell University


The course will be open to 25 participants. We invite applications by PhD and early post-doctoral students from the social sciences and humanities whose research project is in line with the thematic scope of the course. Priority will be given to students who have concluded substantial fieldwork in the domain of contentious resource governance, armed conflict and political violence. Candidates can apply by sending both a 1 page CV and a 1000 words outline of the research paper they want to discuss at the course.

This outline should specify how their PhD project relates to the overall theme of this course and give clear indications on the theoretical and methodological approach adopted. Applications should be sent to our conference manager at no later than 15 May 2016.

Successful applicants will be notified by 15 June 2016. The participant’s fee is 250 CHF. Lunch on all days and one dinner will be provided. Participants will have to cover their own transport and accommodation. Working language: English.

ECTS points for participation: 5.

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