Thematic Areas of Research
CERGU has four different thematic areas of research. These themes can vary based on relevant changes that occur in Europe and the composition of CERGU's research network. Researchers can also conduct research related to more than one of these areas
Europe's cultural borders have been forged in a balance between the historical and the contemporary, both within nations and between them, as well as between Europe and the rest of the world. National boundaries in Europe are sometimes overshadowed by the boundaries that define minorities, migration and the diaspora, as well as those that separate diferent regions and different European identities. Research within this profile can include concepts, discourses, narratives and values, linguistic landscapes or other cultural markers. Research can focus on regional levels, such as the Nordic/Central European/Balkans/ Catalonia or on Europe as a whole. It can be framed in terms of differing perspectives, for example how transnationalism exceeds and creates new cultural boundaries or how to deal with issues that take place on the border between politics and religion and how this can lead to new questions about the state of Christianity, Islam or other religious identities and traditions in Europe.
Mobility and Migration in Europe
The European continent has been shaped and influenced by different kinds of movements. Mobility and migration represent both opportunities and challenges for individuals, as well as for the sending and receiving communities. In Europe, it is also possible to see a stark contrast between what is considered to be a desirable and an undesirable mobility, which, in turn, can have an impact on the ability of different groups to migrate short or long-term to new places. This theme therefore includes studies of the various legal frameworks that affect people's ability to cross borders to seek shelter, study or work, as well as the design and management of migration policy at the local, national and European level, as well as how political, social and economic migration can affect individuals, as well as communities, in Europe.
Institutions, Parties, and Movements
Societal challenges and changes are not unique to Europe. However, it can be extremely interesting to look at the ways that different parties (parties, movements, citizens) try to influence these changes and developments, and to analyze this from a European perspective, because there are so many different countries and several institutional levels involved. Research on this thematic area includes institutions, legislation and decision-making at different levels in Europe, as well as attempts to influence political outcomes. This can cover research on interaction, leadership and conflicts within and between different political and legal institutions in Europe, as wel as research that focuses on different types of actors such as political parties, social movements, NGOs, social partners and citizens' attitudes. A particular focus is on the interactions and relationships between different levels of society, from European to local.
External Relations, Security, and Trade
Europe's relationship with the outside world is now, and has historically been, a very central issue to the development of European societies. This can include research into how European security policy has changed, foreign trade and direct investment, as well as reseach into the importance of the transatlantic relationship, and how Europe has succeeded and failed at influencing developments in other parts of the world, regarding democratization, economic development and peace-building measures. The foreign affairs of individual European countries, as well as cooperation at the European level regarding external relations and the meaning of external borders, are also included in this theme. Research which focuses on issues related to strategic partnerships and international legal relationships fall under this theme.