Programme English

HUMANITARIAN CITY, SOLIDARITY STATE? Rethinking strategies of inclusion of refugees

Conference on 5 and 6 December 2019 at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar
Oberlichtsaal,
main building, Geschwister-Scholl-Straße 8

How can Thuringian cities create a good life for all their inhabitants - no matter what nationality or residence permit they have? How can cities in Thuringia become „safe havens“ for all those who risk their lives fleeing to Europe? What could a Solidarity State of Thuringia look like? In order to address these questions from a scientific, political, activist and artistic perspective, the Chair of Urban Studies and Social Research of Bauhaus- Universität Weimar organizes a conference on 5 and 6 December 2019 entitled „Humanitarian City, Solidarity State? Rethinking the strategies of inclusion of refugees“. The conference will take place as an URBAN THINKERS CAMPUS in cooperation with UN-Habitat and the Thuringian Commissioner for Integration, Migration and Refugees, Mirjam Kruppa.

At the URBAN THINKERS CAMPUS, a global initiative of the World Urban Campaign of the UN-Habitat settlement programme, scientists, representatives from politics and administration, members of international, regional and local organisations and initiatives as well as students meet in Weimar for two days to discuss scopes of action for (inter-)municipal migration policies and strategies for an inclusive and humanitarian city. The aim is to conclude this unique format with concrete proposals for a Weimar and Thuringia standing in solidarity with people seeking refuge. In addition to lectures and discussions, visitors can expect a WALK OF ART by the international art programme „Art in Public Space and New Artistic Strategies“. Furthermore, the conference was preceded by a student-led seminar of art and urban studies students dealing with Solidarity Cities, Migration and Borders and developing student-led workshops and interventions for the conference.

The conference will be held bilingually in German and English. The participation is free, but we ask you for a brief registration at utc[at]uni-weimar.de.

PROGRAMME

Thursday, 5.12.2019

12:00 ARRIVAL AND CHECK-IN

Oberlichtsaal 213, main building of Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

13:00 - 13:30 WELCOME AND OPENING

Localization of the debate in public, political and scientific discourse with welcome speeches by

Prof. Dr. Frank Eckardt (Head of the Chair of Urban Studies and Social Research, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar)

Brigitte Zamzow (Research Associate at the Chair of Urban Studies and Social Research, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar)

Mirjam Kruppa (Thuringian Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration)

Ahmet Soguktas (UN Youth Center Programme Coordinator at UN-Habitat Youth Unit)

Danica Dakic (Spokesperson and professor of the MFA programme „Public Art and New Artistic Strategies“, Bauhaus-Universität Weimar)

13:45 - 15:30 WALK OF ART

During the conference “Humanitarian city, solidarity state?” an artistic walk through Weimar conceived by the international students of the MFA programme “Public Art and New Artistic Strategies” will take place.

Inspired by the semester topic “Whose is this song? (Art) Territories of Belonging” artistic interventions, actions and performances will be developed that address issues of migration, borders and belonging in the context of a complex present. The audience is invited to join the artists on this walk.

Participating artists:
Moawya Alkhadra, Nathalia Azuero, Arijit Bhattacharyya, Miguel Buenrostro, Suelen Calonga, Angélica Camargo Flórez, Viktor Dallmann, Vitor de Almeida Mattos, Lucía Diegó, Adhika Ferdinand, Katherin Gutiérrez, Siena Sewon, Denise Lee, María Paula Maldonado, Lina Mujica, Maedeh Nassouri, Matheus Opa, Diana Pacelli, Eleftheria Panousi, Sornrapat Patharakorn, Milad Rezaei, Eemaan Raja, Tian Titirat Skultantimayta, Nora Spiekermann, Cansu Naz Tekir, Michael Usling, Farzane Vaziritabar, Lea Maria Wittich

WALK OF ART is a public art exhibition project by the international MFA programme “Public Art and New Artistic Strategies” at the Faculty of Art and Design at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, led by professor Danica Dakić, Raul Walch, Ina Weise, Jirka Reichmann (coordinator).


15:30 - 16:00 BREAK

 

 

16:00 - 16:45 TALK 1: The City and its Power to Act

TALK 1 with Stefanie Kron
Moderation: Prof. Dr. Frank Eckardt

The efforts behind Solidarity Cities in Europe are steadily increasing. Civic groups, local politicians and authorities resist the increasing restrictions on European and national borders and migration policy. At the same time, they develop concrete, local policies to protect or include people with an unresolved residential status. However, the status quo of a city, as well as its involved stakeholders, its particular priorities and its approaches to action might differ from each case to another. The input attempts to systematise the stakeholders and practices of the Solidary City and to identify challenges and successes.

Stefanie Kron, PhD, is a Sociologist and Senior Advisor for International Migration and Labour at the Academy for Political Education of the Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung in Berlin. The focus of her work and scientific research is a comparative perspective on migration and border regimes, as well as transnational labour disputes in the sector of logistics and transportation. Stefanie Kron is co-publisher of ‘Movements’, the Journal for Critical Migration and Border Regime Studies, and member of the Network for Critical Migration and Border Regime Research (kritnet).

Selected publications in 2019:
Solidarische Städte in Europa“ (Hg. Mit Wenke Christoph). Berlin: Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung
The Atlas of Migration“ (Hg. Mit Johanna Bussemer et al.). Berlin: Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung

16:45 - 17:30 TALK 2: Networks and Social Movements for Solidarity Cities in the EU border regime

TALK 2 with Stephan Liebscher
Moderation: Brigitte Zamzow and Felix Mayer

The presentation focuses on municipal alliances of solidarity and translocal platforms which are engaged for the legal rights of people that are identified as ‘migrants’. First, Stephan Liebscher will give an overview on different forms of action. Then, the focus will be on the possibilities of cooperation between the civic movements, the public administrational sector and transnational migrants. He will conclude with some remarks on the resulting tensions in between the stakeholders.

Stephan Liebscher is a Research Assistant at the Institute for Geographic Sciences at the FU Berlin. The core area of his work lies on the possible figurations of a pluralistic, post-migratory society in the urban space and spatial practices, which he researches together with the research team “Globalisation, Transformation, Gender”. The key factors for him are the transformation of regimes, collaboration among social movements, institutions and science, process orientation, multi-scalar perspectives and visual representations.

17:30 - 18:00 BREAK

 

 

18:00 - 18:45 TALK 3: EU Urban Policymaking: Towards a better socio-spatial Inclusion

TALK 3 with Laura Colini
Moderation: Elodie Vittu and Miriam Neßler

There has been a shift after 2015 for what concerns cities roles in the EU political arena.  Cities, at the fore front of reception of migrants and refugees, now occupy a new political space proposing an alternative to the lack of cohesion among Member States. Cities can integrate/include newcomers through EU supported instruments, programmes, fundings. They help to design and implement local projects dealing with housing, health, education, inclusion in the labour market, anti-discrimination et al.  Such initiatives showed at time progressive and exemplar local practices of inclusion of migrants. At the same time, there are several contradictions which affect the capacity to intervene more effectively and on larger scale. They lay in the way funds to cities are designed, in multi scalar governance and in the restrictive measures preventing a radical revision of EU inclusion policies.

Laura Colini is co-founder and the senior researcher of the urban research platform tesserae. She has a PhD in Urban, Regional and Environmental Design and was Marie-Curie Post-Doc at Bauhaus-Universität. Her most recent work covers topics related to EU urban policies, urban inequalities, inclusion of migrants and refugees, housing & financialisation. She has been working as an academic in Italy, Germany, France, UK, USA. Currently she works as senior policy expert on social and urban policies for the EU-KOM (URBACT, UIA, EU Urban Agenda). As activist she is part of the artists’ collectives OginoKnauss and Viaindustriae, member of INURA network, and since May 2018 part of the Palermo Charter Platform Process on the right to mobility of migrants.

18:45 - 19:30 TALK 4: Weimar and Thuringia

TALK 4 with Mirjam Kruppa
Moderation: Selina Müller and Lotta Alber

The Thuringian Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration Miriam Kruppa has maintained a clear stance in dealing with refugees since taking office in 2015. During her work, she experiences a civil society often caught between tension and ambiguity: A strong will to help which is often based on volunteer work on the one side, and  on the other side, discriminatory and racist hostility towards migrants. Miriam Kruppa encourages and urges both civil society and the government to commit themselves consistently and publicly to the protection of solidarity of human rights.

Before becoming the Thuringian Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration, Miriam Kruppa worked as a lawyer focusing on the German migration and asylum law and as a specialist in the German administrative law. Main components of her work were legal advice for refugees in the federal accommodations of Thuringia, support during the hearings before the Federal Office of Migration and Refugees, as well as the legal representation in administrative proceedings.  Miriam Kruppa also supports the protestant church in Erfurt as a voluntary advisor for refugees and is an active member of the conference of legal advisors of UNHCR. As of 2005, she has been member of the Thuringian Commission on Hardship Cases.

19:30 - 20:30 EVENING TALK: Local Youth Participation and UN Youth, Peace and Security and Humanitarian Agenda

Evening Talk with representatives of international organizations

Young women and men are vital partners for humanitarian action, peace, security, and development in the urban context. They possess the creativity and knowledge necessary to drive positive social transformations conducive to social inclusion and innovation. Youth participation in the local governments strengthens the democracy, increases civic culture and active citizenship, and builds a social capital that contributes to creating safe, livable and sustainable cities.

In this session, the participants will discuss the results of the humanitarian crises worldwide in the context of the youth participation and peace, security and humanitarian agenda of the United Nations. How can international organizations and global initiatives play a stronger role in the settlement of the young refugees in a better way and contribute their participation in the local, national and international levels? Is local youth participation one of the key solutions for the integration and adaptation of the young refugees? What are the effects of the humanitarian crises in African Countries? How can we stop the migrants‘ and refugees’ death in the Mediterranean Sea?

Participants:  Ahmet Soguktas (UN-Habitat), Nidal Benali (UN-Habitat World Urban Youth Councils Network), Sherife Tekdal (Youth Activist)

Friday, 6.12.2019

09:00 - 09:50 IMPULSES of active people in Thuringia

Seebrücke Erfurt

Seebrücke is an international civic movement. We call for safe escape routes for refugees, a decriminalization of sea rescue and a humanitarian reception of refugees.

Interkultureller Verein Gera e.V.

IKV (Interkultureller Verein – intercultural association) Gera e.V. is an organization which has been self-organized by migrants in Gera for 25 years. During this time, there were different thematic focuses and changing target groups, but the main goal always stayed the same: building bridges between cultures and people and commitment to democracy and social cohesion.

Initiative für Freundlichkeit – Ein Weimar ohne Grenzen

The Iff was founded at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, as a group of students directly engaged in solidarity work with refugees. Now, the initiative is focused on pointing out borders on a municipal level and determined to overcome them. The initiative works together with refugees living in municipal accommodation, organizes demonstrations and political events to raise the public attention on the current situation and to improve the sense of community in the city of Weimar.

Futura – Integrationsbündnis Altenburger Land e.V.

„Futura - Integrationsbündnis Altenburger Land e.V.“ is an association for the promotion of aid for politically, racially or religiously persecuted people, for refugees and displaced persons. The project „Integratives Zentrum - Integrative Centre“ was launched in 2018 and is supported by the Free State of Thuringia in cooperation with the municipality of Altenburg.

We‘ll come United

We‘ll Come United is a self-organized network of various social, anti-racist and political networks of refugees and supporters, scientists, teachers, neighbours, people of all ages and from all sectors of society. The common goal: to encourage, to exchange experiences of resistance, to build up structures. And condense the everyday struggles. For a society without racism and exclusion.

09:50 - 10:10 RECAP and Transition into the Workshops

 

 

10:10 - 12:00 WORKSHOPS: Thuringia as a Solidarity State?

As part of the student led seminar „Solidarity Cities“ with students of urban studies and the MFA programme „Art in Public Space and New Artistic Strategies“, workshops have been developed that invite the conference participants to explore the agency of a solidary society on individual to regional level, in between the city, educational institutions, labor market and production of borders. The results of the workshops will be presented at 11:30.

 

Leeways of Thuringia within the EU-border regime
Bastian Kniza, Jannis Koch

The workshop will examine the role of Thuringia within the system of the EU border and deportation regime. What possibilities do exist at the level of state policy? What are the specific problems confronting the federal state and individual actors? Based on practical and scientific case studies, aspects of public perception and urbanity will be discussed. Leeways will be developed and pointed out.

 

Safe Harbor Weimar and beyond
Franziska Felger, Lara Maria Hartig, Isabela Mattos e Assumpcão, Kaya Peters, Paulina Schute, Caroline Seiberlich

It’s the 1st of march 2020, the number of safe harbors in Europe has grown and cities all over are sanctuaries for refugees. Laws have changed: People can unrestrictedly cross borders and the right to asylum is not questioned anymore. The city of Weimar is a safe harbor. All citizens know how to move and act in this environment. Everybody is safe. Where did they gain their knowledge? What are safe harbors and how can they look like? Please come and join our workshop to discuss together those questions.

 

Humanising Information and Sustaining Academia
Damla Isiklilar, Arijit Bhattacharyya

In 2015, Weimar received 600 refugees as part of their social integration program. There were a series of articles about this situation published by New York Times. We tried to trace the people mentioned in this article and invite them to speak about the process of social integration. As a result of this process we could get in touch with Bashar Al-Sulaiman. He will be talking about how the process of social integration has been for him? How does the presentation of social integration is presented and represented? It‘s a dialogical workshop. As an extension of the workshop Damla Isiklilar and Arijit Bhattacharyya would give a brief introduction about the past and present forms of migration from a global south perspective.

 

Integration of refugees in the German labour and training market
Martin Weissbach, Arne Siemer, Robin Wieland, Jona Liebler, Philip Lehmann, Philipp Sommer, Lena Wild

Free access to the labor market offers many refugees a chance of a secure life in Germany. However, this is currently not possible for everyone. Problems arise, for example, from the difficulty of recognizing acquired education or degrees, finding companies or the language barrier. A fundamental problem is the regulatory requirements. These create uncertainties for companies and refugees, which makes cooperation difficult. After a joint introduction to the topic, the workshop will look for creative ideas for improving the current system.

 

Solidarity University?!
Lorenz Brösch, Victoria Grau, Femke Jansen, Pernilla Kober, Pia Lindloge

Discussing Solidarity Cities and the impact they can have on communities and the public eye, we wondered where the Bauhaus-University Weimar is positioned in that matter? What is the Bauhaus-University already doing to integrate refugees and international students? And what should they do? What role do the students play? Is there a gap between the claim of solidarity and the action? In this workshop we are trying to discuss these questions, the possibilities universities have and have a look on experiences by people who are affected.

 

The student teaching and learning project “Solidarity Cities” (Winter semester 2019/20), within which the students’ workshops were developed, is part of the Bauhaus.Module and funded by the head of the university.

12:15 - 13:15 FINAL PLENARY AND CONCLUDING REMARKS

 

 

Framework Programme

6.12. INTERVENTIONS: Thuringia as a Solidarity State?

As part of the student led seminar „Solidarity Cities“ with students of urban studies and the MFA programme „Art in Public Space and New Artistic Strategies“, interventions have been developed that bring up questions of urban and national citizenship, own privileges and the omnipresence of borders.

 

Location meets Information
Hendrik Doktorcyk, Elina Volz, Nikola Hefner, David Vydra, Richard Laßner, Clara-Marlen Wilke, Clara Müller

With the help of installed fact papers on the subject of migration in the Oberlichtsaal, an indirect experience of space is made possible. Fixed points for this are certain places in the room such as door thresholds, windows, chairs, etc. This stimulates awareness and provides information on specific situations and legal framework conditions that determine migration. During the Urban Thinkers Campus, the participant will be informed with individual facts on border crossing, distribution/assignment of migrants in the country, on refugee routes as well as on refugee shelters and refugee care, all of which are located in the room and, at best, encourage the viewer to reflect.

 

Staatsbürgerschafts(re)validierungsanwärter*innenprüfungsbehörde
Diana Pacelli, Viktor Dallmann, Nathalia Azuero, Maria Maldonado, Lea Wittich

Are you german enough? Reassess your german citizenship or apply for a brand new one and experience the unique german bureaucracy. For citizens holding a german ID: You can keep it, if you make it through the test.

 

Urban Citizenship Weimar & YMR – Why am I here?
Nikolaus Andreas de Macedo Schäfer, Jonathan Bernhard Hock, Arnisa Halili

Our concept consists of an Urban Citizenship Card, which is linked to a broader network of decentralized safe spaces in Weimar. With the card, each community member receives a sticker for his*her doorbell, indicating that they wish to open their home to other community members as a place of welcoming. We wish to enable informal connections that, at their core, are based on a mutual desire to provide support and share experiences. Through these varied exchanges, we hope to break down cultural and interpersonal borders within Weimar in order to enrich our community as a whole.

The student teaching and learning project “Solidarity Cities” (Winter semester 2019/20), within which the students’ interventions were developed, is part of the Bauhaus.Module and funded by the head of the university.

6.12. 16:00 GRENZWERTIGE GEGENWART

An auditory artistic examination of borders

Der Laden Weimar, Trierer Straße 5, 99423 Weimar
6.12.2019, 16:00

by Yolanda Rüchel and Tobias Ludwig, with Oury Dialloh, Vivian Chikodinaka, Ingraban von Stolzmann and Franceska Menges

We are confronted with borders every day and now we want to confront our borders. Together with the listeners we dive into an auditory confrontation of and with borders. We listen carefully, explore and hold on. Different perspectives and personal questions merge into an experimental audio piece.

7.12. 19:00 WEIT WEG UND UNBEACHTET

Theme evening: Far away and unnoticed. The Refugee District in Belgrade in the context of flight, urban development and border regimes

Themenabend: Weit weg und unbeachtet. Der Refugee District in Belgrad im Kontext von Flucht, Stadtentwicklung und Grenzregimen

Der Laden Weimar, Trierer Straße 5, 99423 Weimar
7.12.2019, 19:00

Since 2017 we, Miriam Neßler, Zita Seichter and Paul Knopf, have been dealing with the city of Belgrade as the focal point of the Balkan route. On the basis of the so-called „Refugee District“ in the city center of Belgrade we want to make connections between flight, urban development and the Serbian and EU border regime visible and discuss to what extent we in Germany are called upon here and now to attack the existing orders.

We invite you to the presentation of our observations and analyses and then would like to discuss and reflect on them together. You will also be able to see finds and mappings that offer an alternative approach to the topic.