Famous Last Words
Nov 14, 2014
Angela Pennisi di Floristella, Karen Del Biondo, and Frank Schimmelfennig tell about their time at the KFG.
The experience at the KFG The Transformative Power of Europe has been the best research experience I have ever had in my life, for at least three motives. First, the Monday Jour Fixe is a great moment to critically discuss high-level research papers, and invite more thoughtful and critical thinking. Second, the KFG is the ideal environment to share ideas with outstanding scholars, post-doctoral fellows and PhD candidates. I have benefited extremely from these encounters, and I have learned a lot on how to carry out research projects. Finally, I will never forget the welcoming and informal atmosphere of the once a week dinners, especially those in the summer semester, when thanks to warmer temperatures, we could stay outside and appreciate the beauty of Berlin. I have no words to thank Tanja and Thomas for having given me this unique opportunity!
I have really enjoyed conducting my research project on the Joint Africa-EU Strategy at the KFG Transformative Power of Europe. The KFG is an extremely stimulating environment, where plenty of interesting workshops, seminars and conferences take place. Tanja and Thomas are amongst the most committed and productive researchers I have ever met. I learned a lot from the weekly Jour Fixe seminars. The presence of several of the most well-known researchers in the field raised the discussion to the highest academic level. I made several friends at the KFG and had a great time during the dinners after the Jour Fixe. It was an extremely fruitful year, with papers having been accepted in high-quality journals such as the Journal of Common Market Studies and World Development. I am extremely grateful to Tanja, Thomas, Astrid, Katja, Anne and all the others for having made all of this possible!
The months I spent at the KFG as a fellow were a great opportunity to get work done in a stimulating environment – and a Eurocentrist’s journey to outer space. Not only is there life in regional integration beyond Europe, but my stay at the KFG was an eye-opener for me on its political biodiversity.