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Concept of the ENS of Digital Studies

At the European New School of Digital Studies (ENS), a new transdisciplinary and international field of research and teaching shall be established through scientific interaction with the digital European society, which will contribute to a significant expansion of the profile of the European University Viadrina (EUV) and the Collegium Polonicum (CP) as a progressive and innovative scientific location.

With the ENS, the founding mission of Viadrina as a European University will be continued and the German-Polish scientific cooperation with Adam Mickiewicz University (AMU) will also be institutionally raised to a new level. Together, the two universities are addressing a European issue of the future, namely the challenges and opportunities of the European digital society.

In a first step, the ENS will be founded as an EUV institution according to Brandenburg university law. At the same time, the AMU will follow an equivalent path according to Polish higher education law. The perspective is to establish the ENS as a joint cross-border institution of the EUV and AMU at the CP.

Transdisciplinary research and teaching on the European digital society

At the ENS, economists, lawyers, social scientists, humanities scholars, as well as technical experts in computer and technology sciences will teach and conduct research with the aim of finding answers to the challenges of the digital society.

The central research fields of the ENS will comprise the following areas:

Grafik 1 ©Jürgen Neyer

The interdisciplinary core college will comprise four W2/W3 professorships with the denominations „Information Management and Digital Transformation“, „Law and Ethics of the Digital Society“, „Political Theory and Digital Democracy“ and „Sociology of Technology“. The AMU contributes its expertise in computer and technology sciences to research and teaching at the ENS. External fellows and guest lecturers with civil society, business and technological expertise are involved in research and teaching on a project-by-project basis.

In the winter semester 2020/21, teaching and study operations are to start with the international Master of Digital Entrepreneurship (MADE), which combines social science and humanities, economics, law and technical study content in a student-centred and project-based curriculum. Successful students of the MADE will receive a Double Degree by AMU and EUV. In the medium term, the range of courses is to be expanded to include a Bachelor's and a research-oriented Master's program as well as a further education component.

Grafik 2 ©Jürgen Neyer

All courses are transdisciplinary; they combine scientific reflections with practical skills and qualify graduates to help shaping social and economic change in the European digital society. Students are understood as partners in the research and teaching process and they are given the opportunity to realise their student projects at the ENS and with local, regional and international cooperation partners (companies, NGOs, etc.).

Digital teaching, learning and test formats are a central component of the studies at the ENS. They will be developed, tested and evaluated right there and thereby they are themselves the subject of scientific reflection on digitisation.

Networked in science and society - science in and for society

The ENS is integrated into the regional and European scientific landscape: in addition to the joint study offers with AMU and the intensified cooperation with Panthéon-Sorbonne, it cooperates with the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, the Leibniz Institute for Innovative Microelectronics and the Fraunhofer Institute for Open Communication Systems (FOKUS), among others, and intends to establish further cooperative relationships in Brandenburg and Berlin.

The cooperation with the Co-Working Space of the Viadrina, the transfer office, the planned start-up workshop, the media law clinic, the Legal Tech Center as well as the Center for Internet and Human Rights will promote knowledge and practice transfer as well as networking with regional and supraregional practice and cooperation partners and set growth impulses for the region.

Prof. Dr. Jürgen Neyer has presented the European New School of Digital Studies on December 5th 2018 in the Committee for Science, Research and Culture of the Brandenburg State Parliament (Protocol - in German)