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Study Groups

Our research falls into two broad fields:

Ethnographic Methods and Research Ethics

The study group provides a platform for discussing issues around ethnographic methodology, research design and research ethics in the ongoing research carried out by members of the Graduate School for East and Southeast Europen Studies (GS OSES) at the UR.

It caters for PhD students and postdocs, as well as other researchers who carry out qualitative research with living subjects - as is the case mainly in ethnographic fieldwork, digital etnography or netnography (online research using social media for example), oral history research, and research based on various types of (expert) interviews. The study group is also open to historians who wish to engage with recent debates around the research ethics of using archival, visual, and other sources pertaining to deceased subjects, for example victims of political violence.

In each session one study group member will discuss methodological problems and dilemmas around research design and research ethics in their project. To reflect on these issues we will read and discuss recent theoretical and methodological contributions relevant to the topic.

Group Leaders:

Members and Projects

  • Elia Bescotti, M.A.
    Contested Sovereignties and Ontological in-Security in the Post-Soviet Politics of International Law. Practices and Narratives of Non-Recognition in Georgia and Abkhazia, and Moldova and Transnistria
  • Miloš Đurović, M.A. 
    Coping with Pollution in a Coal-Mining town on the periphery of Montenegro
  • Barbara Frey, M.A.
    Corruption in Serbia und Croatia since 1990
  • Olha Matyniuk, M.A.
    Red Army Soldiers: Representations and Perceptions in Ukraine since 1991
  • Magdolna Molnár, M.A.
    Cross-Border Repair and Repairers in the Transition to a European Circular Economy Tracing the Trade of Small Repairable Electronic Devices between Germany and Hungary
  • Yulia Pyankova, M.A.
    The Borders of Permissible Past: Monuments and Spaces of Memory in Putin’s Russia
  • Igor Stipić, M.A.
    Who Speaks the Nation-State?: Hegemonic Structures, Subaltern Pedagogies, and Fractured Community in Bosnia and Chile
  • Vita Zelenska, M.A.
    What Does it Mean to Be a Refugee? Sites of Knowledge Production and Their Asymmetrical Entanglements

Representation, Narrations

This study group brings together PhD students and senior scholars from a range of disciplines, including history, political science, linguistics, and cultural studies. Research projects of study group members address different forms of representations based on discourses, knowledge, and practices. We are interested in highlighting the underlying dynamics of knowledge production and relate them to locally bound social practices. This is an eminent task for Area Studies, which tap into local knowledge and serve as translators between different knowledge spaces. An important aspect concerns the representation of knowledge in relation to principles of categorization. Through joint readings, the discussion of the applicability of various approaches in different disciplines, and the presentation of individual dissertation chapters, the study group aims at enhancing interdisciplinary exchange. Our study group is based on the assumption that learning about different approaches to investigate the same phenomenon creates new ideas for any project. 

Group Leaders:

Members and Projects

  • Magdalena Daller, M.A.
    Haute Cuisine in Russia in the 18th and 19th Century

  • Lena-Marie Franke, M.A.
    Early Narratives of the Shoah in Czech Literature
  • Anna Ivanova, M.A.
  • Jovana Jovic, M.A.
    Framing Corruption. A Lexical-Semantic Analysis of the Thematic Use of Words Based on Serbian and Croatian Press Texts from 1919 to the Present Day
  • Miloš Lecić, M.A.
    Corruption in Serbia and Croatia in the “Short” 20th Century, 1914–1989
  • Damjan Matković, M.A. 
    Informality and Corruption in Serbia 1817–1914
  • Jon Matlack, M.A.
    Maneuvering towards ‘The West’: U.S. Army-Bundeswehr joint War Games as Conduit for Western Identity Formation
  • Cornelius Merz, M.A.
    Exploring Identity and Belonging through Spatial Relations – a Comparative Study of Cleveland and Leipzig, 1890–1930
  • Niklas Platzer, M.A.
    The Beet Sugar Industry of the Habsburg Empire in the Long 19th Century
  • Efthalia Prokopiou, M.A.
    Notions of Home in the Far Right “White Genocide” Narrative. A Multinational and Multilingual Approach to Contemporary Far Right Self-Representations in Europe and the Americas
  • Olga Trufanova, M.A.
    Absorbing the Asian Frontier: Food and Food-Related Knowledge in Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Siberia

Former Study Groups