EOI: Winter Institute - 'The Universal in Crisis'



7-9 NOVEMBER 2023

The New Institute, Hamburg, Germany

The Winter Institute is an annual collaboration between ANU, New York University, the University of Tokyo and the University of Bonn. The Institute involves a 3-day seminar program on an interdisciplinary theme. The program involves keynote lectures, faculty papers and graduate student presentations including crossdisciplinary questioning. The Institute also includes social and networking events for delegates.

ANU Delegation:
The ANU Australian Studies Institute (AuSI) is offering six delegate positions to the 2023 Winter Institute. Three places will be on offer for ANU PhD candidates and three places for ANU early career academic staff.

Applications are encouraged from all disciplinary and interdisciplinary backgrounds. Participants will be expected to present a short paper (between 10–15 mins) and participate in Institute forums and discussions.

AuSI will cover the cost of flights to the Institute to the value of AUD$3,500. The New Institute will provide accommodation and meals during the Institute.

EOI Process:
Applicants will need to submit the following as part of the EOI process:

  • Title of proposed presentation
  • Abstract (demonstrating how it relates to the 2023 theme) (max 300 words)
  • CV (max 2 pages)
  • Email approval from Supervisor or Head of School supporting your attendance

Completed EOIs should be sent to: 
admin.ausi@anu.edu.au by Midnight (AEST) Sunday 20 August 2023.

2023 Theme: 'The Universal in Crisis'

In December 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It was intended to set a “common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations”. The first three Articles set out the broad parameters of the Declaration.

  • Article 1: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
  • Article 2: Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.
  • Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

Article 26 of the Declaration refers to Education.

  • Point 2: Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

Although it has been translated into over 500 languages around the globe it could be argued that the Declaration’s lofty aspirations have never been fulfilled for all, or even the majority, of human beings. However, many continue to uphold the universalist values of an inclusive world - equality, justice, and human dignity – as the only hope for humanity. A new Enlightenment.

The theme ‘The Universal in Crisis’ presupposes that there is an existential threat to universalist values.

The rise of populism and nationalism; growing inequality; religious extremism; environmental inequality; the unfettered use of communications technologies; globalisation; the decline in consensus politics together with mistrust of governments and officialdom, the loss of faith in international organisations all, ostensibly at least, to point to a burgeoning crisis.

Is the Universal in Crisis? If so, is it worth saving or revivifying? Has it passed its ‘use-by’ date? Scholars, from whatever their disciplinary, interdisciplinary, transdisciplinary perspective, have a role to play in interrogating these propositions.

The 2023 Winter Institute at the New Institute in Hamburg will provide such an opportunity to continue conversations and begin new ones.

Updated:  2 August 2023/Responsible Officer:  Institute Director/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications