Old Rule and New Traditions: Generational Divides in Central & Eastern Europe

8 March 2014

From 19-21 February SSEES hosted the 13th International Postgraduate Conference on Central and Eastern Europe. Organised bi-annually entirely by the School’s PhD students, it is one of the largest postgraduate conference in the UK.

pgconference

This year’s theme – ‘Old Rules & New Traditions: Generational Divides in Central & Eastern Europe’ – attracted a record number of applications and saw the presentation of over 120 papers from disciplines such diverse as health economics, anthropology, film studies, and political science. The almost 40 different panels showcased the diversity of on-going research into Central Eastern Europe, South-East Europe and the countries of the former Soviet Union. Panel topics included: Memory, nostalgia, and changing perceptions of the past; Radical politics; Consumerism and (post) materialism; EU, NGOs, and corruption in the Balkans; and Generational change in religious practice.

Each day of the conference featured a keynote speech and a panel discussion with direct relevance to the professional development of PhD students. The three professional development panels offered conference participants the opportunity to discuss strategies for publishing research, academic blogging and social media, and obtaining an academic position. The keynote speakers included Dr Erin Saltman (UCL SSEES) who talked about generational differences in the political socialisation of young people Hungary as well as Dr Denisa Kostovicova (LSE) and Professor Stephen Lovell (King’s College London).

The conference also included two receptions where participants could network and develop new ideas for common research. Furthermore, the opening reception featured speeches by UCL Vice-Provost (Research) Professor David Price and the Head of Postgraduate Research at SSEES, Martyn Rady, as well as a performance by the Veda Slovena Bulgarian Choir.

As in previous years, the conference was not only generously supported by UCL SSEES and the UCL Graduate School, but the organisation committee was also able to secure substantial support from the UCL European Institute, the University Association of Contemporary European Studies (UACES), Maney Publishing and ibidem press. To document the fruitful and engaging discussion as the conference, a peer-reviewed selection of conference papers will be published over the course of the next year.