UCL News


UCL SSEES leads the way for new language-based research centre

14 June 2006

A consortium led by the UCL School of Slavonic & East European Studies (UCL SSEES) has been awarded £5.

George Kolankiewicz 6 million to set up a Centre for East European Language-Based Area Studies (CEELBAS). The funding for the centre came from HEFCE, the AHRC and the ESRC and was made under the UK's strategic initiative for investment in language-based area studies.

The consortium includes Russian & East European Studies (REES) at the University of Oxford and the Centre for Russian & East European Studies at the University of Birmingham. They, together with SSEES, will work closely with other designated partner institutions at the universities of Bath, Cambridge, Kent, Manchester, Sheffield, Warwick and SOAS, to develop language-based research capacity around key research themes. They will do this through a programme of postgraduate scholarships, postdoctoral fellowships, mid-career training, workshops and conferences, as well as engagement with the user community and international networks.

Professor George Kolankiewicz, Director of UCL SSEES, explained the importance of the new centre: "The need to understand developments in central and eastern Europe - areas such as migration, cultural identity and the negotiation of recent history, health, energy politics, economic integration and democratisation - remains as urgent as ever 15 years after the collapse of communism. The centre's vision is to respond to this challenge and so to set the research agenda and inform policymaking, nationally and internationally."

The centre aims to integrate the scholarly capacities of the universities involved in order to generate a sustainable flow of highly trained area expertise, able to deal with the urgent research issues of the day and sensitive to the multidisciplinary and complex approaches this requires.

"The combined strengths of the collaborating universities amount to an unrivalled breadth of expertise in the social sciences and humanities, as well as in language provision, covering most  of the countries of the region," added Professor Kolankiewicz.

To find out more about UCL SSEES, use the link at the bottom of this article.

Image: Professor Kolankiewicz