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Global Responsibility of Universities

November 20, 2018 / Panel discussion on flight, migration, and the role of German universities

№ 322/2018 from Nov 15, 2018

What responsibilities should universities take on with regard to flight and migration movements? How have these developments changed academic life and diversity on campus? How does the highly controversial migration debate affect knowledge production, and how does academia participate in the overall social discourse? These and related questions will be debated by scholars Prof. Dr. Gülay Çağlar, Dr. Leyla Dakhli, Prof. Dr. Michael Keith, and Dr. Florian Kohstall during a panel discussion “Global Responsibility in Times of Migration: What is the Role of the University?” The event will take place as part of a lecture series on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the founding of Freie Universität: Global Responsibility in Times of Migration: What is the Role of the University?. The panel discussion on November 20, 2018, will be in English. To attend, please register by email: cic@fu-berlin.de.

Global responsibility is often understood as the core of internationalization and the self-image of higher education institutions, especially in times when refugee students as well as endangered scholars wish to be accepted in a safe environment. What challenges and opportunities does this present? Freie Universität, for example, is involved in the Scholars at Risk initiative and launched the Welcome@FUBerlin program, an initiative that helps refugees prepare for studying at a German university.


Prof. Dr. Gülay Çağlar is a political scientist at Freie Universität Berlin, where she teaches and does research on gender and diversity. Among other things, she deals with the role of academia in forming political opinions and decision-making processes as well as the influence of public debates on academic knowledge production.

Dr. Leyla Dakhli, a scholar at the Centre Marc Bloch in Berlin, specializes in the intellectual and social history of the Arab cultural area. She manages an EU-funded research program on Arab insurgency since the 1950s. Together with her colleague Prof. Dr. Pascale Laborier, director of the Centre Marc Bloch, she initiated a study on academic measures in place since the 1970s for protecting refugees.

Prof. Dr. Michael Keith is the director of the Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS) at the University of Oxford. He does research on migration and its influence on the transformation of urban environments and living environments. In his upcoming book entitled Power, Identity and Representation: Race, Governance and Mobilisation in British Society, he analyzes the fabric of power, identity, and representation in British society.

The debate will be moderated by Dr. Florian Kohstall, head of the Welcome@FUBerlin program for refugee students. He also initiated a mentoring program for threatened scholars who fled their homelands – Academics in Solidarity.

Time and Location

  • November 20, 2018, 4 p.m.
  • Freie Universität, Seminar Center, Room L113 (ground floor), Otto-von-Simson-Straße 26, 14195 Berlin;
    subway station: Dahlem Dorf (U3) ot Freie Universität (Thielplatz) (U3); Bus: Hittorfstraße (X11, M11)

70th Anniversary Celebration at Freie Universität:

Ernst Reuter Day

Further Information


Dr. Florian Kohstall, Center for International Cooperation, Freie Universität Berlin, Tel.: +49 30 838 73947, Email: florian.kohstall@fu-berlin.de