GCfE Annual Conference

The Graduate Centre for Europe hosts an annual conference each spring which invites postgraduates across a variety of disciplines from all around the world. It is held each year at the University of Birmingham and is organised by the GCfE student committee. The conference is held over two days and features five to six panels with papers delivered by postgraduate researchers. At least one prominent speaker is invited to give a keynote address each year. Social highlights of the conference include a dinner for presenters and academics at the University as well as a closing wine reception on the final day. The conference attracts a high number of delegates each year, enabling our participants to present to a varied audience and to network with researchers from several disciplines and fields.


Graduate Centre for Europe
University of Birmingham
12th Annual Conference

Transitions, Transactions, Translations:
Europe on the threshold
An interdisciplinary conference
10th-11th May 2018

Europe has always been a continent in constant change. Leading to 2020, it will be undergoing further dramatic transformations. Indeed, Europe and the European Union are in the midst of a historic reshaping. On the political scene, several recent events will change the face of Europe. With transitions such as Brexit, as well as other cries for independence echoing in the distance, how will Europe tackle and resolve tensions while preserving its unity? How will this affect political relationships and cultural exchange within Europe? Will there be more transactions between the peripheries?

Europe’s relations with the wider world are also currently at stake. The refugee crisis will see the relocation of thousands of people to Europe. This challenge will create a renewed need for translation and transnational exchanges. Furthermore, Europe’s historic partnership with the USA is being undermined, not least by Donald Trump’s protectionist politics. How will positions like this affect transactions between Europe and the rest of the world?

The conference wishes to address questions such as: How has Europe approached transitional periods in the past and dealt with subsequent (r)evolutions? What is in store for Europe and the EU? How will Europe’s relations with the rest of the world unfold?

We invite contributions from disciplines such as Political Sciences, Economics, Arts, History, European Studies, Languages, Translation Studies, Environmental Sciences, etc. Topics may include but are not limited to:

  • Transitions: accession to/succession from Europe, economic reforms, climate change (e.g. Paris Agreement, carbon transition), refugee crisis, separatism (e.g. Catalonia), technological and artistic innovation, political integration, etc.
  • Transactions: trade (e.g. CETA, TTIP), tariffs, advertising, cultural capital, exchange of human capital, knowledge transfer, investments, etc.
  • Translations: mobility, linguistic and cultural translations, influx of narratives from the outside (e.g. Russian propaganda), ideology, transnational communication and infrastructure, currency, etc.

As a Centre run by a steering committee of postgraduates, we particularly encourage postgraduates and early career researchers to apply. A number of bursaries will be available to assist with travel and accommodation expenses. If you would like to present at the conference, please send an abstract of 200-300 words, along with your contact details and a brief biographical note, to: gcfe@contacts.bham.ac.uk by 19 January 2018.



Previous GCfE Conferences

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2017 ‘Reassessing Britain’s relation with Europe: From role model to enfant terrible ?’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2016 ‘Between Utopia and Dystopia. Redefining Europe Today’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2015 ‘Dissident Voices. Europe Past, Present and Future’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2014 ‘Travelling Europe’: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Place and Space

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2013 ‘Europe: A Progressive Continent?’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2012 ‘Collapsing Europe?’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2011 ‘Europe on the move’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2010 ‘Europe: Inside out’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2009 ‘Europe, a continent of paradoxes’

GCfE Postgraduate Conference 2008 ‘The Borders of Europe and the European: Identity, History, Politics and Culture’

GCfE Inaugural Postgraduate Conference 2007: ‘The Future of Europe: Identity, History, Politics and Culture’

To read more about our previous conferences please visit our academic website: Previous Conferences


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