As the academic year ends, I'm writing to share with you brief notes from a banner year in programming and pedagogy. Our Conversations on Europe series featured diplomats, scholars, writers and musicians. Diego Marani – an award-winning novelist, and senior linguist and policy officer at the European Commission’s Directorate General for Interpretation – gave our annual keynote lecture, in collaboration with the LSA theme semester on language, and the EU and Danish Ambassadors visited. Our programming continues to be enormously popular, both on campus and on line; in the last year, CES lectures posted to YouTube were viewed more than 14,000 times. We started a blog this year in order to give campus experts an opportunity to comment on events in Europe. Our graduate certificate received final approval and was activated during the Winter 2012 semester, and our undergraduate minor continues to grow.

We welcomed our 2011-12 EUI Visiting Fellow, Igor Guardiancich (PhD Political and Social Sciences), who taught a course in the Department of Political Science (POLSCI 497.005, Political Economy of Transition in Europe) and gave a lecture titled “Pension Policy in Central and East Europe: Reforms and Reversals” in our Conversations on Europe series. He also gave lectures at the University of Denver, at the University of Windsor, and at the 19th International Conference of Europeanists in Boston. During the Winter 2013 semester we will host Thomas Cauvin as EUI Visiting Fellow. Cauvin will teach a course in the History department; watch for his lecture in the Conversations in Europe series during the Winter 2013 semester. And please read on for a list of graduate and undergraduate student awards and students graduating this year with the Minor in Modern European Studies.

As this brief summary of our year makes clear, as current events unfold in the EU, CES remains an ideal venue for timely and cogent analysis from scholars and experts. Next year will see a change in leadership at CES, as I step down and a new director (still to be named) takes over. On behalf of Natasa Alajbegovic-Gruden and myself, I thank you for your contributions to our programs this year and look forward to seeing you at CES events next year. 

Karla Mallette
Associate Professor, Italian and Near Eastern Studies
Interim Director, Center for European Studies
University of Michigan