November 2021

Toolbox, DEI and Governance

In November 2021, the annual fall meeting of the Understanding Europe Coordinators took place in Berlin on the Spree Island. It was the third Coordinators’ Meeting in 2021 that brought the network together. Due to restrictions for the coronavirus pandemic the meeting took place in an hybrid form. Thanks to the buddy system, which was found to be very good at the last meeting and which always linked one participant on site and one participant online, a good personal involvement of all participants was nevertheless guaranteed.

The first day of the Coordinators’ Meeting in November we watched videos from all countries together, in which the coordinators talked about the challenges, successes and opportunities of the past six months and the coming six months in their Understanding Europe teams.

On the second day, the coordinators had the opportunity to discuss certain challenges of working as an Understanding Europe Coordinator in collegial case consultation. This is particularly important in this round, as most of the expertise for working as a coordinator lies with the coordinators themselves, and they can advise each other excellently. This was followed by an extensive workshop on social media with Friedrich Landenberger, which was followed by a short input on participation formats with students.

On the third day, the group received a focus lecture on the topic of climate and democracy from the Kipp.Punkt.Kollektiv. The Coordinators’ had previously requested more input on this topic, as knowledge and discussion on the topic was often requested in classrooms across Europe. This was taken as an opportunity to reintroduce the climate supplement to the EU crash course developed by Laura Meijer in 2019. Afterwards, the coordinators had time to work on the budgets for their projects for 2022. The evening was rounded off by another improvisational theatre unit with Katja Wischniewski.

The last day of the Coordinators’ Meeting was marked by an overview of planned activities of the network in 2022. Moreover, Coordinators engaged very concrete discussions on how to organise their daily work with the teams and the communication within the Network.

  • ©Stefanie Loos