-The kick-off meeting of the BROAD-ER (Bridging the Migration and Urban Studies Nexus) Project was held during 24-25 November 2022 at Koç University, Istanbul, Turkey.-
The BROAD-ER Project is an EU-funded Twinning Project that primarily intends to lay the foundations of strategic networking and collaboration in the themes of migration and urban studies. BROAD-ER received 1.4M € from the European Commission Twinning Action fund (HORIZON-WIDERA-2021-ACCESS-03), and Koç University (MiReKoc) acts as the project coordinator.
The first consortium meeting brought together three leading research universities, which are Pompeu Fabra University (UPF, Spain), the University of Amsterdam (UvA, The Netherlands,) and Koç University (KU, Turkey). Project partners extensively debated the mian objectives and action points for the next three years.
The two-day meeting started with welcoming remarks and a presentation by Prof. Dr. Ahmet İçduygu, Director of MiReKoc, which focused on the vision of BROAD-ER, with particular emphasis on the project’s timeline and core activities. The event continued with remarks by two other principal investigators of the project, Prof. Dr. Ricard Zapata-Barrero, (the Director of GRITIM-UPF, Interdisciplinary Research Group on Immigration) and Prof. Dr. Jan Rath, (Professor of Urban Sociology in the Department of Sociology of the University of Amsterdam, UvA).
Revolving around the themes of “urban resilience,” and “governance capacities,” Ricard Zapata-Barrero highlighted the crucial role of this project in unfolding the capacities of cities for regional development. Touching on the reciprocal relationship between cities and migrants, Jan Rath attached utmost importance to the necessity of a paradigm change in seeing how cities not only impact migrants’ life but also how migrants co-produce cities.
The BROAD-ER Consortium meeting continued with a discussion of different work packages, action points, primary training, and research activities that form the project’s backbone. Plausible risks, the ways to handle them, and the long-term sustainability of the project were among the main items on the agenda. Eventually, the partners agreed on a program for the next three years. Senior and junior researchers working at the intersection of urban and migration studies exchanges ideas about their research expertise and interests.
Objectives of BROAD-ER
BROAD-ER, first and foremost, aims to build a Research Excellence Network which will foster interdisciplinary research and education at the nexus of migration and urban studies. The collaboration of these three universities aims at closing the research gap within the ERA by establishing innovative and interdisciplinary approaches while also increasing Research & Innovation capacities in Turkey in pivotal emergent fields, namely migration and urban studies. To achieve this, BROAD-ER will offer scientific and research management training activities to researchers, including research proposal management and key transferable skills (ethical issues, diversity, equity and inclusion, scientific outreach, entrepreneurship, technology transfer, etc.) while addressing research excellence in the project’s fields. The training plans, including summer and winter schools, will be complemented with mobility activities allowing the establishment of networking structures and increasing KU’s internationalization. BROAD-ER will result in multiple (joint) publications in high-impact top-tier journals, an increased capacity to attract research funding and undertake proposal management, and an updated open and transparent recruitment process for researchers.
Five Specific Objectives Lie at the Heart of BROAD-ER:
- Establish innovative approaches for bridging migration and urban politics research
- Establish a multidisciplinary research group of top-class and promising researchers at the nexus of urban and migration studies to close the research gaps and increase the R&I capacities
- Strengthen cooperation, integration, and knowledge exchange with the international research community, industry, and policymakers
- Enhance innovation capacity and performance to ensure long-term sustainability
- Effectively disseminate and communicate BROAD-ER project activities and results
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