Director's Unit

Even so the concepts of vulnerability and resilience – highly influenced by human ecology and environmental risk research – increasingly have been adapted to research areas in social sciences, desiderata still remain. In the cross-departmental project, a theory-based concept was developed that addresses the desiderata. It is based on a social constructivist approach, actor-network theory and on relational theories on space. more

Dynamics of Economic Spaces

The research project “Coping With Crises in a Resilient Manner” (RESKIU) deals with the potential for crises to provide solutions, and seeks to explore what can be done by the involved actors not only to mitigate the symptoms of crises, but also to create and use “opportunities” for structural change. The project has a duration of three years and will bring together basic and applied research on crises. more

Krisen können definiert werden als dramatische Situationen, die einen hohen Handlungsdruck auf Akteure auslösen,. Diese müssen schnelle Entscheidungen treffen, um die akute Lage zu entschärfen und die Krisensituation zu lösen. Um in komplexen Situationen Entscheidungen treffen zu können, spielt Beratung von außen eine bedeutende Rolle. Das Projekt ist als Literaturstudie angelegt, die das Verhältnis von „Beratern“ und „Entscheidern“ in Krisen-Kontexten aufarbeitet. more

Even so the concepts of vulnerability and resilience – highly influenced by human ecology and environmental risk research – increasingly have been adapted to research areas in social sciences, desiderata still remain. In the cross-departmental project, a theory-based concept was developed that addresses the desiderata. It is based on a social constructivist approach, actor-network theory and on relational theories on space. more

Institutional Change and Regional Public Goods

Even so the concepts of vulnerability and resilience – highly influenced by human ecology and environmental risk research – increasingly have been adapted to research areas in social sciences, desiderata still remain. In the cross-departmental project, a theory-based concept was developed that addresses the desiderata. It is based on a social constructivist approach, actor-network theory and on relational theories on space. more

Dynamics of Communication, Knowledge and Spatial Development

The aim of the project is to investigate in how far ways of dealing with aquatic phenomena such as, for example, floods in river regions is influenced by cultural knowledge. It focuses on perceptions of potential vulnerability (constructions of vulnerability) and local risk reduction practices (constructions of resilience). more

The lead project explores municipalities in structurally weak rural areas where citizens and actors from politics, administration or business seek creative ways to solve local problems. The lead project’s aim is to investigate these innovative projects in rural areas. The civic engagement under study ranges from renewable energies, local supply as well as arts and culture. more

Ways of handling climate change vary worldwide. Differences can be observed in the perception of potential threats and opportunities as well as in the appraisal of adequate coping strategies. Collective efforts often fail not because of technical restrictions, but owing to social and cultural differences between agents involved. Consequently, there is a need to explore in greater depth those "zones of cultural friction” which emerge when agents deal with climate change. In his dissertation project Thorsten Heimann exermined, what kinds of “climate cultures” can be observed within European Coastal Areas, what the discriminants of different “climate cultures” are and/or how different climate cultures be can explained. more

Even so the concepts of vulnerability and resilience – highly influenced by human ecology and environmental risk research – increasingly have been adapted to research areas in social sciences, desiderata still remain. In the cross-departmental project, a theory-based concept was developed that addresses the desiderata. It is based on a social constructivist approach, actor-network theory and on relational theories on space. more

The project “How societies deal with Climate Change” - a part of the “Potsdam Research Cluster for Georisk Analysis, Environmental Change and Sustainability” (PROGRESS) - funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) used social-scientific methods to examine how changes in climate are anticipated, perceived, and transformed into action in the North Sea and Baltic Sea regions. more

Regeneration of Cities and Towns

Coastal regions are and will continue to be strongly affected by mega trends such as environmental change and migration. Traditionally, internal migration originates from but also flows to coastal regions. This particularly applies to international migration as well. At the same time, coastal regions worldwide are strongly impacted by unfolding geomorphological, climatic and societal changes. more

The purpose of this thesis is to advance the understanding of refugees’ everyday life conditions within the European Union today. While in the years of the cold war the “refugee” was rather seen as a “hero”, nowadays (s)he is represented as a “victim” (Marchetti, 2014b): In the public discourse the word “Refugee” is currently associated to words such as “marginalization”, “poverty”. Indeed most of refugees are experiencing all of this. Moving away from this perspective in this dissertation I consider refugees as social actors in the European Union system; I have focused on their mobility across countries, namely Italy and Germany, because mobility is a necessary – although unequally accessible – resource in order to build a living. This thesis describes and explains the mechanisms that lie in refugees’ lived experiences of discrimination and marginalization, notably focusing on the legal status of refugees and their mobility, analyzing their interaction within the Schengen area. Basing on an ethnographic research, this thesis thus explores and analyses the cross-national mobility of refugees’ within the Schengen area and the living conditions of refugees both in loco and while moving across Turin and Berlin, two cities that are two important knots in the wide spanning web of contacts of refugees who took part in my research. more

Even so the concepts of vulnerability and resilience – highly influenced by human ecology and environmental risk research – increasingly have been adapted to research areas in social sciences, desiderata still remain. In the cross-departmental project, a theory-based concept was developed that addresses the desiderata. It is based on a social constructivist approach, actor-network theory and on relational theories on space. more