Brandt School Universität Erfurt

Putting Theory into Practice: Study Trip of CSMP Students on Germany’s foreign policy to Berlin

From 30th January to 1st February 20 first and second year students from the area of concentration “Conflict Studies and Management” participated in a study trip to Berlin organized by Prof. Solveig Richter, Juniorprofessor for International Conflict Management. Students were able to profit from first hand information on the German role in international crisis management by meeting policy makers from different institutions and to learn about strategic priorities of the German government in dealing with fragile states. The first day of the trip (Wednesday 30th January 2019) started with the presentation of the project group “Policy and Peace” final results at the Center for Peace Operations (Zentrum für Internationale Friedenseinsätze, ZIF). The Project group had worked for more than four month on technological innovations in peace missions and was able to identify potential arenas for future engagement of Germany. On the second day (Thursday 31st January 2019) during the morning the students visited the planning department of Germany’s Bundeswehr at a military base in Berlin. Representatives of the German general staff explained the strategies and priorities of the german military engagement in EU, NATO and UN Missions. In the afternoon, the Deputy Head of Analysis at the Center for Peace Operations analyzed the current situation and gave an outlook into different conflicts around the world and what political events to expect during 2019. Later on, the whole group visited the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs where students had the opportunity to talk to the Head of the Division for Crisis Prevention, Stabilisation, Post-Conflict Peacebuilding and Humanitarian Assistance. On the last day (Friday 1st February 2019) students visited the German Institute for International and Security Affairs /Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP) and gained insights on transnational crime and illicit economies in African countries. As a nice closure of the study trip, students visited a guide tour in the exhibition: “Welcome to Jerusalem” in the Jewish Museum of Berlin. The exhibition highlighted the modern and antique life in Jerusalem and presented in an illustrative way some of the reasons for the protracted conflict in the Middle East. It was a complete study trip where there was also space for networking between CSMP Doctoral and Masters Alumni currently working in public German and International Organizations in Berlin and to continue building the bridges among Willy Brandt Students and those working around the world.