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Call for papers

Call for papers for the 2020 MatchPoints Seminar at Aarhus University, 23-25 April 2020:
"Denmark and Germany in Europe – Cooperation, Conflict and Future Challenges"

Since 2007, Aarhus University has hosted the annual MatchPoints Seminar, bringing together researchers, politicians, business representatives and civil society organisations to discuss critical, current societal issues. We are happy to announce the topic of the 2020 MatchPoints Seminar; Denmark and Germany in Europe – Cooperation, Conflict and Future Challenges, and researchers are now invited to submit paper proposals for the Seminar, which will take place on 23-25 April 2020.

2020 is an important year in Danish-German relations. Proclaimed official Danish-German cultural friendship-year, the year 2020 also marks the centenary of today’s Danish-German border, the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War, the 65th anniversary of the Copenhagen-Bonn Agreements on national minorities in the Danish-German Borderland, and the 30th anniversary of German reunification. The 2020 MatchPoints Seminar wishes to explore and discuss important developments and patterns of interaction in the Danish-German relationship since the 19th century and situate current and former Danish-German cultural, political and economic relations in their broader European contexts. In doing so, the seminar emphasises the vital importance for both countries of collaboration with other European countries in shaping a common European future.

The MatchPoints Seminar will offer a wide range of keynote lectures and panel debates by speakers of the highest prominence. These include, among others, columnist, historian and Professor Anne Applebaum, Professor Wolfgang Ischinger (tbc), Professor Astrid Erll, Professor Ole Wæver and leading German and Danish politicians and government officials. The paper sessions of the seminar will be organised around the following four themes:

State, nation, nationalism and borders in the Danish-German relationship 1820-2020

  • Border Issues prior to and after 1871
  • German-Nordic Relations and the Re-making of the European Order after 1919
  • The German Model and its Role in the European Economic Space after 1945
  • Germany, Denmark and the New Geopolitical Turn in European Politics

Danish-German-European cultural change and exchange

  • Critical Theory and the Legacies of 1968
  • Memory Culture
  • Media and Identity
  • Movement and Migration

Danish-German-European-Global economic integration and cooperation (still in planning)

  • Is Green Growth an Answer to Climate Change?
  • What can we learn about the EMU and the Euro Crisis? 
  • Old and New Economic Borders in Europe
  • Is there (still) a German Economic model for Europe?

Together in the EU: the future of the European Union

  • Populism and Euroscepticism
  • Migration: Social and Political Challenges
  • European Security
  • European Cohesion

More information:
The seminar wishes to encourage interdisciplinary research and dialogue and invites researchers from across the humanities, political and social science, economics and law to submit papers in relation to any of the four themes.  

Confirmed speakers:

  • Columnist, historian and Professor Anne Applebaum, London School of Economics
  • Professor Astrid Erll, Goethe University Frankfurt
  • Professor Harold Marcuse, UC Santa Barbara.
  • Professor Ole Wæver, University of Copenhagen
  • Professor Elizabeth Buettner, Amsterdam University
  • Professor Steen Bo Frandsen, University of Southern Denmark
  • Associate Professor Morten Rasmussen, University of Copenhagen
  • Associate Professor Jes Fabricius Møller, University of Copenhagen
  • Associate Professor Hagen Schulz-Forberg, Aarhus University 
  • Senior Lecturer Dagmar Brunow, Linnæus University
  • Senior Lecturer Michael Jonas, Helmut Schmidt University, Hamburg
  • Professor Christian Martin, New York University/Kiel University
  • Professor Florian Trauner, Institute for European Studies (IES) at the Vrije Universiteit Brussels
  • Professor, Dr. Niklas Potrafke, Ifo Center and Munich University
  • Professor Kai Gehring, Zürich University
  • Professor Emmanuel Mourlon-Druol, Glasgow University
  • Secretary General Jeppe Tranholm-Mikkelsen, Council of the European Union
  • Researcher Christine Nissen, Danish Institute of International Studies. 
  • Postdoc Tobias Wung Sung, University of Southern Denmark


Time and place:
23-25 April 2020 at Aarhus University, The Lakeside Lecture Theatres, Bartholins Allé 3, 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.

Deadline for paper proposals:
10 June 2019.

The paper proposal must not exceed 300 words and should include a brief outline of the topic, argument and the paper itself, information about which theme and session(s) the paper relates to and contact details of the presenter. At the seminar, each speaker will be allotted 15 minutes to presents his/her paper, no written papers are required. Abstracts, including a short CV, should be sent to matchpoints2020@au.dk

Fees and registration

Early bird – approx. DKK 1200 incl. VAT (EUR 160)
Late bird – approx. DKK 1700 incl. VAT (EUR 225)
Registration opens January 2020

Professor Thorsten Borring Olesen is Chair and Coordinator of the MatchPoints Seminar 2020. The Seminar has further set up an organising committee consisting of members from both within and outside Aarhus University. See the complete list of members of the steering committee here