The inaugural cohort of GIAS Junior Fellows are concluding their first year at the Global Institute for Advanced Study

July 5, 2023

The inaugural cohort of the GIAS Junior Fellowship Program, with 9 emerging international young researchers, is approaching the end of its first academic year at the Global Institute of Advanced Study (GIAS) which the fellows spent in residence at IAS CEU in Budapest.

The Global Institute for Advanced Study has opened its doors for the first time in the Fall of 2022 with the ambition to provide a nurturing environment and a launching pad for the international academic careers of excellent, committed early career scholars and help them develop a critical presence in and outside academia and a strong voice in global scholarly debates. As a new format, GIAS emerged from a productive collaboration between IAS CEU and the Open Society University Network, developing further IAS CEU Director Nadia Al-Bagdadi’s effort not only to enhance the global presence at the Institute, but to connect to other institutions globally, too. In previous years, the Institute on a smaller scale offered the former Global Challenges Fellowship which was hosted by IAS CEU and CEU’s Public Policy Department and supported by the VW Foundation.

The GIAS Junior Fellowship Program integrates both of the partners’ conceptual framework: offering the advancements of a global interdisciplinary intellectual community based on solid partnerships among institutions, while it also provides a safe space for curiosity-driven research, allowing researchers to freely determine the course of their study and to pursuit innovative and independent inquiry. The program provides long-term support for collaborative research in the form of network fellowships and research grants. These opportunities allow young scholars to embark on a major research project early on in their careers and to expand their research and professional networks with partner universities. After their first year at IAS CEU, fellows are now preparing to depart for their second year at various OSUN institutions around the world.

For example, GIAS Fellow Dr. Dmitrii Asinovskii who is studying the role of Soviet bureaucratic culture in the foreign policy decision-making, will be continuing his research project at the European Humanities University in Vilnius starting in September 2023. Dmitrii is using a large collection of recently declassified CPSU Central Committee documents, which has become available through the Russian State Archive of Contemporary History. This allows him to combine his previous research with new evidence and stronger arguments. “Even before receiving the fellowship, I had the idea to study the conspiratorial thinking of the Cold War superpowers’ leaderships. This year, I have made significant progress in developing my argument, largely thanks to the discoveries made in the OSA. However, to fully carry out this project, I will need to conduct more extensive archival research, primarily in the British, American, and German archives. This is my main goal for the second year of the fellowship.”

Another fellow, who will move to one of the OSUN partners, the University of Witwatersrand, is GIAS Fellow Dr. Youssef Mnaili. He conducts an in-depth analysis of the political dynamics of settlement projects, drawing comparisons between the Israeli Settler movement and Afrikaner nationalism. Throughout his fellowship, he has made significant progress on multiple manuscripts relating to the topic and in May organized the authors’ workshop ‘Indirect Governance in the Middle East and North Africa’ with senior and junior experts in the MENA region, with the aim of publishing an edited volume in 2024.

“The GIAS fellowship offers a remarkable platform for early career researchers like myself to share our research progress and findings through various conferences, seminars, and workshops. Undeniably, this exposure has not only facilitated further research opportunities but has also contributed to the advancement of my professional career. I will spend my second year at the renowned Wits Institute for Social & Economic Research (WISER) in Johannesburg. This opportunity will allow me to collaborate with esteemed experts in my field, benefiting from their valuable feedback and fostering an environment that encourages further intellectual exploration and personal growth.” shared Dr. Mnaili.

For more information on GIAS and to see all the fellows’ projects please visit the dedicated part of the website.