Call for Applications

International Summer Seminar on Foreign Policy for students and young professionals at the University of Potsdam, 31. 8. – 4. 9. 2015

Peace and Security in Europe 1945- 1975 – 2015
Lessons from the Past and Challenges of the Future

70 years have passed since the end of World War II, and 40 years have gone by since the Helsinki Final Act was signed in a bid to ease Cold War tensions in Europe. In 2015, issues of war and peace have returned to the forefront of the international agenda and much to the dismay of policy makers, (civil) war once again rears its ugly head in Europe. Meanwhile, former and present superpowers are attempting to shape a new world order, though their efforts are called into question by less formidable, but aspiring newcomers. Geopolitics and other seemingly outdated concepts have returned to the international stage. The threatening, albeit controlled arms race of the Cold War is now taken to a whole new dimension with cyber warfare and drones, while global climate change brings about natural disasters, especially in places where poverty and famine are rampant. The tragedies which have resulted from global policy failures are manifold and their consequences weigh heavily, in Europe and beyond.

In order to counter the prevalent German foreign policy narrative of “new responsibility” (or the lack of it) skeptical, leftist voices are needed, willing to develop strategies for a more peaceful and equitable world. Therefore, the foreign policy journal “WeltTrends” and the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung host a Summer Seminar on Foreign Policy which will take place from 31 August 2015 to 4 September 2015 in Potsdam. The summer school is part of the “Potsdam Week on Foreign Policy” and will include numerous meetings and events on foreign policy and international relations, such as the 19th Potsdam Colloquium on Foreign and Security Policy.

The summer seminar will take place at the University of Potsdam and is open to both students and young professionals of various backgrounds, including political science, journalism, history, geography and economics. Young policy makers from Germany and abroad are also invited to apply. Applicants should have a strong interest in foreign policy in general and in European security in particular. During the three-day course, participants will discuss with both national and international experts and will be able to explore European security from various angles. Besides, participants will have the opportunity to meet with politicians in Berlin and Potsdam and to attend other events during the “Potsdam Week on Foreign Policy”.

Requirements: Applicants should have a keen interest in foreign policy and some basic knowledge of both international relations and European history. Good English skills are required; some knowledge of German would be an asset. There is a maximum of 20 participants, with half of the available space reserved for foreign participants. The organizers will bear the expenses for arrival and departure, accommodation, meals, course materials and travel during the course.

How to apply? Applications including a CV and a short letter of motivation (max. 200 words) should be received by June 30th 2015. All documents should be emailed to Prof. Dr. Raimund Krämer, University Potsdam:



Draft Program

Monday, 31 August 2015


Welcome and Opening

General information on the summer school and its program

Informal get together

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

10-16h Workshops

Panel I:
World order and disorder in the 21st century

Panel II:
European security: preliminary historical background and present-day problems

Panel III:
The OSCE and the prolonged crisis in Ukraine

18-20h Discussion with MPs of DIE LINKE German Bundestag, Berlin


Wednesday, 2 September 2015

10-13h Workshops

Panel I:
Germany and its stake in European security

Panel II:
Russia and European security

Panel III:
The European Security Framework: A Polish perspective

14-18h The Potsdam Agreement: History and present-day significance

(Joint participation in the conference “The Potsdam Agreement – 70 years after”)


Thursday, 3 September 2015

10-13h Workshop

Final Panel:
European security in the 21st century

14-16h Discussion with representatives of the State government
of Brandenburg, Potsdam

17-20h Joint participation in the 19th Potsdam Foreign Policy Colloquium on European Security


Friday, 4 September 2015

9-14h 19th Potsdam Foreign Policy Colloquium