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Organized Creativity and Tradition and Innovation in Texts of the Middle Ages and the Early Modern Period

German Research Foundation Approved Funding for Establishment of Two New Research Groups at Freie Universität Berlin

№ 395/2015 from Dec 11, 2015

The German Research Foundation (DFG) approved funding for 15 new Research Units nationwide, and two of them will be at Freie Universität Berlin. The DFG Senate in Bonn selected the project "Diskursivierungen von Neuem," which at the Department of Philosophy and Humanities will explore tradition and novation in texts of the Middle Ages and the early modern period, and "Organized Creativity," which at the School of Business and Economics will investigate and promote practices inducing and coping with uncertainty. The spokespersons for the projects are Professor Dr. Bernhard Huss at the Institute of Romance Languages and Literatures and Professor Dr. Jörg Sydow at the Management Department. The Research Units will receive a total of 35 million euros over a three-year period. The funding period may be extended for three additional years.

"Diskursivierungen von Neuem. Tradition und Novation in Texten des Mittelalters und der Frühen Neuzeit"

Research in the humanities and cultural studies has repeatedly depicted the controversy over the authority of the past versus the right of the new as a watershed between the pre-modern and the modern. By contrast, numerous individual studies have shown that researchers should not assume a radical break, but rather look at longer periods and more interactions. Researchers in the new group "Diskursivierungen von Neuem" plan to reexamine the existing individual research on a systematic basis. They will analyze literary texts from various European linguistic and cultural areas from the 12th to the 18th centuries and demonstrate how these texts theoretically and practically shape the relationship between old and new. On this basis the researchers intend to work out a redefinition of cultural dynamics extending beyond the theoretical opposition of continuity and disruption.

Organized Creativity – Practices for Inducing and Coping with Uncertainty

The term "organized creativity" seems contradictory: Creative processes are uncertain per se and can only be controlled to a limited extent. Nevertheless, they take place among networks of actors in various spatial and temporal contexts that have a certain degree of organization. The members of the "Organized Creativity" group aim to investigate the structures and practices by which uncertainty is promoted, channeled, or prevented in the creative process. The group is composed of researchers from the fields of business administration, economic geography, and sociology. Their studies will examine the above-named dynamics in the music industry and the pharmaceutical industry.

With its support for Research Units, the DFG aims to give scholars and scientists a possibility to address current and urgent research issues in their fields and to establish new research directions. Overall the DFG is currently funding 189 Research Units and 16 Clinical Research Units.

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