The Bauhaus-Universität Weimar is an international University located in the cultural city of Weimar. This is a place where people from a variety of cultural and geographical backgrounds come together and through their work in the arts and sciences make a joint contribution to the future. In this way, the university follows the tradition of the Bauhaus, which began almost 100 years ago.
The Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, along with the other German universities, advocates open-mindedness, internationalism, honest dialogues, enlightened thinking, plurality of opinions and tolerance. Migration is not a temporary phenomenon. Our society will continue to have to deal with the manifestations, causes and consequences of migration in the future. We pledge our solidarity to those who are currently seeking refuge in Thuringia.
A special thanks goes out to the numerous students, who in addition to their studies have shown a tremendous amount of commitment to those in need, and have thus shown us all what it truly means to be a citizen of the world!
The Presidium of the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar on behalf of the university
Giving space for making place – creative approaches to facilitated co-existence
Winter Semester 2015/2016
Instructor: Ivana Sidzimovska
In reference to the ongoing project »Welcoming cities« the Seminar focuses on creative possibilities for establishing fertile contact and communication between residents and refugees in Thuringia. The Seminar is of transdisciplinary nature, on the intersection between visual arts and urban studies, in which to examine possibilities of intervening artistic and social-scientific research for bridging gaps in cultural and religious differences.
The aim of the Seminar is to facilitate a creative dialogue between »Hosts« (local residents) and »guests« (Arabic refugees) in Thuringia by passing on relevant information about German and Arabic culture, presenting applicable research findings with regards to the project »Welcoming cities« and displaying works of art, to be produced in collaborative fashion and involving artists, researchers, refugees, local residents and students.
Eine Bestandsaufnahme zu Bedürfnissen von Geflüchteten in Weimar
Fakultät Architektur und Urbanistik
Betreuung Lisa Vollmer
Dienstag, 9. Februar 2016
Das Thema:Ein fünfköpfiges Forschungsteam setzt sich über das Wintersemester 2015/16 im Rahmen eines Semesterprojektes mit den Bedürfnissen Asylsuchender in Weimar auseinander. Gleichzeitig untersuchen wir formelle und informelle Strukturen, Akteurinnen und Akteure, deren Vernetzungen und aktuelle Angebote für Geflüchtete. Hierfür nutzen wir vor allem qualitative bzw. Tiefeninterviews. Ziel ist es, ein möglichst umfassendes Gesamtbild von der derzeitigen Situation in Weimar zu erhalten, eventuelle Defizite und Herausforderungen zu erkennen und letztlich Handlungsempfehlungen zu erarbeiten. Den Perspektiven Asylsuchender die Stimme zu geben, die ihnen in diesem Thema zusteht, stellt dabei unser vordergründiges Anliegen dar.
Winter semester 2015/16
Teaching Qualification in Art Education programme
Instructor: Ursula Rogg
The course entitled »Refugees in Thuringia. Closing the Gap through Mediation and Art« pursues the question of what can be achieved through artistic strategies in common activities with refugees. In addition to examining the current living conditions of refugees in Weimar and the surrounding area, students will be called upon to examine their own role in relation to »foreigners«. Students find a position between helpers, mediators, and artists. The seminar is organised into three phases: Gathering information and generating ideas, participation and testing ideas, and finally, collaborative formulation of an exhibition concept. This consists in the planning and application for a presentation at »summaery2016«.
Winter semester 2015/16
Faculty of Civil Engineering
Based on experiences with the »Bordercity« project, students from a range of disciplines cooperated in the context of a week-long workshop to develop approaches to the problem of »flight and refugees« in the area of infrastructure, and come together to engage in critical dialogue about the process and its results.
In the workshop, Dipl.Ing. Jürgen Stäudel, who worked as a logistics specialist for »Doctors Without Borders« in Chad, gave a talk on »Infrastructure development in emergency situations in Sub-Saharan Africa« based on the example of a refugee camp in Chad (Dafur conflict). In addition, Lutz Gruber presented an interactive lecture on the topic of »Erfurt and Refugees« on behalf of Tamara Thierbach, the Director of Social, Educational, and Cultural Affairs for the City of Erfurt.
The main focus of the workshop was the development and refinement of potential solutions based on complex interdependencies, and how to implement them within a technological, technical, social, and socio-cultural framework.
Professors of Biotechnology in Resource Management and Urban Water Management and Sanitation, together with the professor of Architectural Management also participated.
Arrival and living prospects for refugees from an urban development perspective. Developing neighbourhood-specific approaches based on the example of Bremen.
Summer semester 2015
Jan Dierk Stolle
Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism
Master's thesis in the Spatial Planning and Research programme
Advisors: Prof. Dr. Max Welch Guerrra, Prof. Dr. Iris Reuther
Taking as its point of departure the present discussion about the housing of refugees and the hypothesis that the current form of refugee housing makes integration more difficult and thus fails to tap the full potential immigration offers in terms of urban development, this master's thesis examines current challenges and modes of control, as well as long-term concepts for integrative urban and neighbourhood development. To bring subject of this study into sharper focus, the paper includes a critical treatment of the housing situation against the backdrop of current developments, which offers a representation of the state of affairs with regard to refugee housing in Germany and Bremen in 2015.
An examination of the history of immigration and other approaches yielded various models of spatial integration of immigrants, which in this case also includes refugees. These models of residential integration were then used to develop integrated courses of action for the City of Bremen. In this way, integration theory and various models of integration were employed to derive the overall significance of the type - and in particular, the location - of dwellings for the integration of refugees.
Although immediate problems have to be solved with positive pragmatism, long-term integration and further development of existing concepts must also be addressed. Furthermore, based on Bremen's urban development goals, initial approaches to »A Neighbourhood-based Urban Development Strategy for Refugee Integration« were developed from the findings. This was done using a static model to identify three types of neighbourhoods that in view of the high number of refugee immigrants offer various potentials and obstacles with regard to integration of immigrants. Based on these areas, which differ both in terms of infrastructure and the socio-cultural milieu, approaches to urban development in Bremen were formulated that are applicable to other cities.
The creation of a social network that allows asylum-seekers to connect with locals regarding their interests and encourages communal activities.
Winter Semester 2015/16
Faculty of Art and Design
Master's thesis in the degree programme: Produkt-Design / Nachhaltige Produktkulturen
Advisers: Prof. Gerrit Babtist, Johannes Lang
As part of her Master's thesis, Johanna Groß will examine the general issue of refugees in Germany and take a special look at the assistance offered to refugees in Weimar. Her goal is to identify areas that could be improved through better design in order to simplify life for refugees in a foreign land.
The future of the asylum-seekers – regardless of their residence status – and also German society depends on the how these individuals are integrated into the community. In order to encourage this integration, the Master's student is working on an online platform, which will allow new residents of a region to exchange their interests and skills with other inhabitants and to participate in activities together. In addition to the establishment of individual contacts, the platform should also serve as a means to publicize community activities, in order to reach and connect as many individuals as possible – since integration can only be achieved collectively.
Project addressing the topic of life in Gera for asylum-seekers.
Time-frame: Winter Semester 2015/16
Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism
Urban Studies and Social Research
Prof. Dr. Frank Eckardt
Migration in former East Germany is a relatively new, qualitatively and quantitatively different kind of phenomenon. The project consists of a theoretical introduction, methodological training, an independent field study phase and a joint analytical phase. After a substantive introduction, a change and opportunity for a »replacement migration« was recognized through qualitative socio-spatial surveys in Gera and interviews with the local leaders. There was a special focus on the co-existence and communal living of asylum seekers / refugees and the other inhabitants of Gera.
This project is aimed at the development of architectural concepts of hybrid city blocks that should neutralize the global phenomenon of expulsion through the idea of local integration.
Time-frame: Winter Semester 2015/2016
Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism
Prof. Bernd Rudolf, Dr. Luise Nerlich
Final presentation: Thursday, 4 February 2016
Exhibition: 4 -15 February 2016
The search for suitable locations includes urban wastelands and abandoned properties and includes the development of standards that allow for a dignified arrival and dwelling. Unlike monofunctional units, these economic residential arrangements are to be spatially coupled with other formats of social integration (education, athletics, art, music, etc.) in order to promote language acquisition in the community. Exemplary studies can be expected as a result, which examine the very different addressing and networking modes found in complementary functional patterns in inter-generational living situations. The centralized admittance and decentralized integration of refugees requires diverse, yet interconnected concepts. During every stage of the transition from asylum applicant to resident, humane living conditions must be guaranteed. This presupposes the development of adequate standards that allow for a gradual adaptation of equipment with minimum loss (through re-use). Conventional planning and financing strategies will be increasingly questioned as exception regulations are sought to deal with an extremely exceptional situation.
» find out more about this project (in german)
The state administration office has requested that all state institutions in Thuringia delegate personnel for six months to support the administrative needs of the refugee situation. At the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, two employees have agreed to serve in the »refugees« division and the »legal« division in the state administration office. The Bauhaus-Universität Weimar is thus making its contribution to support the state with valuable help because the reception, registration, accommodation of refugees significantly exceeds the normal capacity of the administration.
The general student advisory service is open to anyone – including refugees – who is interested in studying at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar. Multiple consultations with refugees have already taken place – topics range from the general system of higher education in Germany and the higher education landscape in Thuringia to the specific profile and offers available at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar.
Dipl.-Kulturwiss. (Medien) Gudrun Kopf
Head of Department
In addition to other information, the International Office also provides specific information regarding the organisational requirements of living in Weimar (eg. visas, resident permits) during the department's office hours:
International hours for university staff
Tuesday/Thursday 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
International hours at the help desk
Tuesday/Thursday 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
An exchange of ideas occurs during the regular network meetings between the International Office, the immigration office, the student initiative Bauhaus.Internationals, the student council (StuKo), the university's Language Centre, and the international counselors from the faculties. This network is currently focused on coming up with ideas about how to support the refugees.
It is currently being assessed to what extent the integration programmes – buddy, tandem and mentoring programmes – can be opened to include the refugees.
» WIN – Weimar International Network
Dr. Christian Kästner
Head of Department
The Language Centre is currently offering advice for those students who are interested in volunteering to help organise and teach German courses for refugees. Moreover, the Language Centre is involved in providing consultation for refugees regarding the acquisition of German language skills necessary to complete a degree programme in Germany.
Next consulting hours:
Thursday, 14.01.2016, 1.30 pm
Coudraystraße 13, 99423 Weimar, room 207
Dr. Susanne Kirchmeyer
Head of Department
The University Library has made German course books and teachers books available as part of its textbook collection. The current inventory will be expanded if necessary. Moreover, discarded copies of German as a second language materials from the library inventory and the Language Centre are being used to support the students who have volunteered to teach language courses for the refugees.
Dr. Frank Simon-Ritz
Many of the university's gyms are already being used as accommodation for the refugees. The Bauhaus-Universität Weimar also offered the gym on Falkenberg to the state as an emergency shelter for the refugees, but an on-site inspection of the facility revealed that it was unsuitable as an accommodation for refugees.
Dr. Uwe Türk-Noack
Head of Department
»We help Weimar« takes non-bureaucratic action to help integrate and involve refugees in everyday life in Weimar and concentrates its activities on the group domicile at Nordstrasse 9-11, administered by the Workers' Welfare Association (AWO) as the sponsoring social agency. The initiative seeks to bridge the gap between Weimar's refugee services institutions, the public, and especially students. The motto is: »Don't wait, take action!«
The primary focus of »We help Weimar« is to enable people seeking refuge to get off to a good start in our community quickly and without a lot of red tape. In this context, it is important to enable and promote integration from day one. The initiative prefers interpersonal exchange to one-sided handouts. Supplying necessities, such as clothing and bedding is just part of getting refugees off to a good start, but learning the German language and lifestyle through contact with people who live here is also indispensable for successful coexistence.
So far, »We help Weimar« has organised itself around the following issues:
- Tandem language courses with daycare
- Recreational activities
- Intercultural evenings
- Cooperation with WE Dance and the Stellwerk Theatre
- Clothing distribution
In response to the sustained flow of refugees, the Multigenerational House in Weimar West has established a pool of voluntary linguists. International students and university employees take part in a network to overcome language barriers between refugees and Germans.
The goal of the linguist pool is to offer uncomplicated help in emergency situations and in dealing with the challenges of daily life. Institutions, such as the City of Weimar, schools, daycare centres, social agencies, officials, etc. in Weimar and the surrounding area can request linguists from the linguist pool without a lot of red tape. For a small fee, volunteers help out and provide translation services. Private institutions and individuals can also use the pool. The main focus is on helping people without a knowledge of the German language to understand and resolve important questions.
The linguist pool is still looking for people who speak at least two of the sought-after languages, such as German and Arabic. In addition to Arabic, speakers of Dari, Tigrinya, Kurdish, and western Balkan languages are required. People competent in these languages should also speak German or English. The linguist pool helps both refugees and institutions. People seeking and offering language services can reach the pool at the e-mail address below.
Wortschatz sums up a variety of projects focusing on language as an integral part of the integration process. German and Arabian courses offer an easy and user-friendly introduction. Workshops deepen the knowledge about the German culture and offer a place to discuss the difficulties of arriving and settling in. All of Wortschatz’ offers are free for everyone. The groups are organized by volunteers and held in rooms at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar. This also includes a child care during the language courses.
The »Design.Build.Studio« impulse group is preparing a pilot project aimed at putting the currently vacant state-owned property of the former JVA/JAA on Weimarer Thälmannstrasse to a new use. The goal is to create an integrative living and working community for trainees, students, and refugees. A special emphasis is being placed on inclusive urban design and social space, as well as local economic development.
According to the concept, future users and potential sponsors would be included in multiple aspects of the process from the very beginning by helping with construction, for instance.
It is also important to track the project scientifically to consolidate the results for use in other locations. The higher education landscape in Thuringia offers numerous subjects and research specialities that will be integrated into the network.
The Design.Build.Studio impulse group collaborates closely with ongoing projects in the context of the university and sees as its future responsibility the support of these projects through establishment, coordination, and financing of long-term integration, activity, and research spaces. With the support of the registered cooperative association and an external funder, the impulse group is currently formulating a collaborative operating model for the former JVA/JAA Weimar as well as a calculation of investment costs.
The goal of Design.Build.Studio is to develop viable concepts and operating models, as well as implementation on a 1:1 scale.
Impulsgruppe Design.Build.Studio eG (currently being founded):
Pierre Kramann-Musculus B.F.A. (Faculty of Art and Design)
Dipl. Ing. Henning Michelsen (Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism)
Dr. Ing. Johannes Warda (Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism)
On the City of Weimar website, you can find information for citizens who want to take action to help with refugees. In addition to donating food and money, residents can volunteer in a number of ways.
In October 2013 the »IfF« was founded as an initiative of Bauhaus-University's student's association. We focus on socio-political actions concerning escape and asylum.
What we do:
- Organize events concerning escape and asylum e.g. exhibitions, discussions, theater plays
- Organize petitions, demonstrations, manifestations, poitical art, open letters, press releases to create public discussions
- Create a space for people to meet, discuss and exchange ideas
An overview of information and advisory services offered at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar for refugees as prospective students:
» General academic advising for international applicants (available in English & German)
Geschwister-Scholl-Straße 15, room 005
Office hours: Tuesday & Thursday 10 a.m.– 11.30 a.m. / 1 p.m. - 3 p.m. as well as Wednesday 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
» Advising service for international applicants (available in English & German)
Geschwister-Scholl-Straße 15, room 008
Office hours: Tuesday 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. / 1 p.m. – 2 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
» Language Centre at the Bauhaus-Universität Weimar
Information and advice regarding German courses
Dr. Susanne Kirchmeyer
Place: Coudraystraße 13A, room. 206
Appointments: 10 and 24 February 2016, at 1:30 p.m.
» Open Campus Day for Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programmes
General Student Advisory Info Stand
Place: Marienstraße 15, Mensa am Park
Date: Saturday, 11 March 2017, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
» Studying in Thuringia – Thuringian Universities´Information Day for Refugees and Migrants
Place: Comcenter Brühl, Mainzerhofstraße 10, 99084 Erfurt
Date: Saturday, 20 February 2016, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
- Advising for recognition procedures of foreign qualifications: iq-thueringen.de
- Information portal for refugees, migrants, volunteers and employers and employees: »Thuringia helps« (available in German, English, French, Arabic, and Persian)
- Assessment test for refugees that examines both the general and subject-related abilities for academic studies: »TestAS«
- Online Language Placement Test for refugees who wish to attend a language course before they begin or continue their studies in Germany: »onSET«
- Nationwide competition for integrative ideas: »Integration 2017«
- Information for refugees who want to study at an university in germany:»study in germany«
- Joint press release (in german) of DAAD and the federal ministry of education and research: Facilitating access to education for refugees
- Nationwide campaign by HRK member universities: »Universities for openness, tolerance and against xenophobia«
Presidium Committee for Refugee Assistance
Prof. Dr. Jutta Emes
Vice-President of Internationalisation and Digitisation
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