We warmly invite you to join the launch workshop of the research project Democratic Education and Political Polarisation in the Era of Global Crises (KONE Foundation, 2021–2023) on Friday 20 August 2021 at 9.00–10.30 AM UCT (12–14.30 EEST). The event will be held in zoom.

The DEMOPOL research project (2021–2023) addresses one of the central political challenges of contemporary democracies from an educational perspective: how can education contribute to addressing global crises through collective political action in a political culture that is characterised by increasing identity-based political polarisation?

In the workshop, we will bring three distinguished international scholars of the fields of political and philosophical study of education into dialogue with the participants of the DEMOPOL project. Each of the guest speakers will comment on the research agenda and approach of the DEMOPOL project from the perspective of their own research themes and background. The idea of the workshop is to bring diverging viewpoints into dialogue in order to illuminate the theoretical and political controversies that the DEMOPOL project investigates. The guest speakers include:

Professor Marianna Papastephanou, University of Cyprus

Professor Johannes Drerup, Technische Universität Dortmund

Associate Professor Rebecca Adami, Stockholm University

[EDIT: Professor Penny Enslin's presentation is cancelled due to health reasons]

Programme (UCT time):

9:00-9:15 AM University lecturer Anniina Leiviskä (Principal investigator of DEMOPOL), University of Helsinki: Introduction to the research project

9:15-9:30 AM Introducing the DEMOPOL subprojects: Doctoral students Tarna Kannisto, Iida Pyy, Tuija Kasa and Ivan Zamotkin (University of Helsinki)

9:30-9:50 AM Professor Marianna Papastephanou: Democratic Education 'in times of crises': predicating the era and responding to the world of today

9:50-10:10 AM Professor Johannes Drerup: The impertinent we: Against identity politics in democratic education

10:10-10:20 Break

10:20-10:40 AM Associate Professor Rebecca Adami: Human Rights Education and Epistemic Justice: cosmopolitan aspirations through decolonizing pedagogy  

10:40-11:30 AM Discussion

Register for the workshop here: https://helsinki.zoom.us/meeting/register/u5YtcO6gpz4rGNBkRiTr_U0mRTwYS3QcsG2e

The zoom-address of the event will be made available upon registration.

Best regards,

DEMOPOL project

About the DEMOPOL project:

The aim of the research project is to address one of the central political challenges of contemporary democracies from an educational perspective: how can education contribute to addressing global crises – including the climate crisis and the prevailing pandemic – through collective political action in a political culture that is characterised by increasing identity-based political polarisation? To address this question, the research examines two theoretical fields with contrasting premises: 1) theories of democratic and global citizenship education and the related theories of democracy and global justice, which are based on the acceptance of universal moral principles and rights; and 2) identity political theories of democracy and education, which emphasise the role of collective political identities in political action. Through bringing these theoretical fields into dialogue, this study seeks to increase the understanding of how education can contribute to creating foundations for collective political action in a polarised political culture. The research is carried out by a five-member research group consisting of philosophers and educational researchers at the University of Helsinki, Faculty of Educational Sciences.