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Wissenschaft im Schloss

Academic lectures for the general public

FAU presents exciting current research projects to the public in the lecture series ‘Wissenschaft im Schloss’. Students, school pupils and members of the public who are interested in research are invited to attend the lectures. The events are hosted by Prof. Dr. Günter Leugering, FAU’s Vice President for International Affairs. After the presentations the researchers will be happy to answer any questions. In the summer semester 2016 the lectures will be held in the Kollegienhaus in Erlangen.

The lectures will be held in German.

Social upheaval, state failures and new regional structures in the Middle East

  • Silhouette of three terrorists


    Monday 25 April 2016, 6.30 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.

  • Prof. Dr. Thomas Demmelhuber, Chair of Middle Eastern Politics and Society

Many regions in the Middle East are in a state of unrest. Five years after the protests in Tunisia and Egypt which led to the ousting of dictators Ben Ali and Mubarak, leading some commentators to proclaim that a new age of democracy had begun, the headlines are dominated by reports of persecution, repression, terrorism and failing states – frequently accompanied by the words ‘Islamic State’. In his lecture Prof. Dr. Thomas Demmelhuber will provide a systematic outline of the course of political and social development in these countries. These regions are undergoing a process of fundamental change in which new regional structures seem to be appearing, while questions of democracy play only a minor role.


Settling in is not easy: psychosocial aspects of integration

  • Sad mother with daughter


    Monday 23 May 2016, 6.30 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.

  • Prof. Dr. Yesim Erim, Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, Universitätsklinikum Erlangen

Over a million refugees came to Germany last year and sociocultural integration is a key challenge for society as a whole. Prof. Dr. Yesim Erim will present theories on the motivations for migration and on migrants’ psychological and cultural adaptation. She will also discuss questions related to the relationship between migration and mental health. What are the known risk factors? Which psychological disorders are likely to occur as a consequence? How do cultural adaptation, residence status and integration in the labour market affect psychological stability? Prof. Dr. Yesim Erim will also consider the topic from a social perspective. Are there enough services being provided to ensure refugees receive adequate psychotherapy? What can volunteers do and how does the field of social psychology explain their willingness to help?


Europe is experiencing a new migration of peoples. Or is it?

  • Collapsed arena


    Monday 18 July 2016, 6.30 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.

  • PD Dr. Roland Steinacher, Freie Universität Berlin

Why is it incorrect to describe the large numbers of refugees who are coming to Europe as a migration of peoples? Because the ‘migration of peoples’ that took place over 1500 years ago was not actually a migration of peoples either. The concept did not exist in Late Antiquity or the early Middle Ages. It was not until the early 16th century that the term ‘migratio gentium’ (migration of peoples) was established, along with the view of history that supports such a theory.
PD Dr. Roland Steinacher explains the reasons for this development in Antiquity and the Middle Ages. Why did
ethnically defined concepts of states such as Vandalic Africa or Frankish Gaul develop in the Roman Empire in the Middle Ages? And how did the people of this period deal with the intellectual tension between universal Christianity, self-definition as Romans and a specific ethnic identity?

Download programme flyer for the lectures in the summer semester 2016

Event location

Senatssaal, Kollegienhaus (first floor)
Universitätsstr. 15
91054 Erlangen



Previous events

All of FAU’s EFI projects have been presented in the ‘Wissenschaft im Schloss’ lecture series. Videos of the presentations are available free of charge online: