IRS economic geographer Marc Schulze received the Peter Meusburger Doctoral Prize "Geography and Knowledge" 2023 for his research on university branches and economic development strategies in Asia. Schulze conducted his research as a doctoral student in the IRS junior research group "Transedu", which investigates the globalisation of higher education. The prize is awarded in honour of the geographer Peter Meusburger, who played a key role in advancing research into the relationship between space and knowledge.
Marc Schulze, research associate in the research focus area "Economy and Civil Society", was awarded the prize on 1 December 2023 in Heidelberg for his dissertation "Universities' Foreign Investment on Stony Ground? Offshore Campus Development in Malaysia and Singapore Between Sector Opening and Closure" was honoured with the Peter Meusburger Doctoral Prize "Knowledge and Space" 2023. He wrote the cumulative thesis at the IRS as part of the Leibniz Junior Research Group "Transedu - Constructing Transnational Spaces of Higher Education". The dissertation project was supervised by Jana Kleibert, who was still a professor at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin at the time. The thesis was also successfully defended here.
Marc Schulze's dissertation was honoured because it contributes to a better understanding of the global development of university branches abroad. Through field research in Malaysia and Singapore, Schulze worked out how the regulation of transnational higher education programmes is constantly being renegotiated on several levels between the main players - universities and nation states. This dynamic takes place in the field of tension between the marketisation of education, the transnational restructuring of universities and regional economic transformation projects. In addition, the laudatory speech for the dissertation emphasises above all the spatial theoretical foundation with which Marc Schulze embeds his empirical work at the interface of economic geography and the geography of knowledge, science and education and brings together the concepts of these two geographies.
The Peter Meusburger Doctoral Prize has been awarded every year since 2019 by former students of Peter Meusburger in Heidelberg. Peter Meusburger worked for many years as a professor of economic and social geography at the University of Heidelberg and was active on the Scientific Advisory Board of the IRS in Erkner from 2007-2015. He was one of the pioneers of educational geography in the German-speaking world and contributed to the establishment of a geography of knowledge within an international and interdisciplinary framework. The award honours excellent work in his name that deals with knowledge and knowledge production in the spatial dimension.