News

30-01-2017

Multiculturalism, Integration and Contact amongst Socio-Ethnic Groups in Malta

On the 20 January, the University of Malta hosted a symposium on “Multiculturalism, Integration and Contact amongst Socio-Ethnic Groups in Malta”.

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The symposium was held at Valletta University Campus, in the framework of the project RE.CRI.RE – between the Representation of the Crisis and the Crisis of Representation – and aimed at communicating the results of international studies concerning intercultural relations.

Thanks to this event, the results of the studies were delivered not only to the local academic community but also to government officials. What is more, Arab members, as well as other immigrants, had the opportunity to share their thoughts and experiences on the topic. The participation of experts on International Studies, Youth Studies and Social Policy enabled the interpretation of the results and the exchange on directions to further policies.

The Re.Cri.Re study investigated social representations concerning the integration of Arabs amongst the Maltese. This was achieved through the identification of different argument structures that support or oppose integration. These argument structures pertained to six thematic clusters: sociopolitical, psychological, economic, religious, stigmatizing and cultural. The activity mainly focused on findings from research concerning intercultural relations in Malta, led by Dr Gordon Sammut (Psychology Lab).

The participants highlighted the need for more psychological studies directed at intercultural argumentative strategies, due to its invaluable transnational potential. The findings of these studies were discussed by a multidisciplinary panel of speakers and the myriad implications of the results for Maltese society were debated. Participants also exchanged on integration, Arabs in Malta, Islam and immigration in general.

Finally, the event was covered by television and the radio and a personal meeting between Dr Gordon Sammut and the President of the Republic of Malta was arranged, in order to discuss the findings of the project.

Useful links:
Psychology lab, University of Malta
Photo gallery of the event

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Re.Cri.Re Working Seminar – Presentation of the intermediate results of the study – Lecce (Italy), 14 December 2016

On December 14, at 3 p.m., in Lecce will be held the second working seminar organized by ISBEM and by the Department of History, Society and Human Studies – University of Salento. During the meeting, it will be presented and discussed the results of the mapping of the European symbolic universes also with the help of several professors from different theoretical areas.

See the playbill of the event below.

Useful links:
Playbill (italian version)

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Second Working Seminar at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki: Wednesday 9th of November 2016 at the School of Psychology of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

The second working seminar organised in the context of Re. Cri.Re, by the team of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki was held on Wednesday 9th of November 2016 at the School of Psychology of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
The aim of the seminar was to present and discuss findings from Work Package 3 and to invite participants to further research activities planned to take place in the context of WP3. Evrinomy Avdi, associate professor in clinical psychology, scientific coordinator of Re.Cri.Re. on behalf of AUTH, and her colleagues, Anna Mylona and Ifigeneia Koutri, associate researchers, introduced the project rationale and the project’s research design and presented the findings of Work Package 3 of the project. More specifically, the findings of the synchronic and the diachronic analysis were presented and discussed with a focus on those findings concerning the symbolic universes in Greece. Also, the next steps of the Greek research team (Auth) concerning the implementation of focus groups with mental health and psychosocial support professionals were communicated to the seminar participants.
Twentythree mental health professionals from several local mental health and psychosocial intervention organizations as well as undergraduate and postgraduate students of the School of Psychology attended the seminar. Professionals from the following organization participated in the seminar: the Hellenic Center of Mental Health and Research, the Shelter for Women Victims of Domestic Violence, ARSIS-a non-governmental social association, and the Family Therapy Department of the Psychiatric Hospital of Thessaloniki. All participants attended the event with great interest.
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RE.CRI.RE. project presentation at European Researchers’ Night – University of Salento – Lecce, 30th September 2016

Last 30th of September the RE.CRI.RE. project was presented during the European Researchers’ Night that celebrated its eleventh anniverary. Launched by the European Commission in 2005, the iniziative took place in hundreds of European cities and universities with the aim to reduce the distance between the general public and the researchers disseminating scientific culture and information in an informal and stimulating context. The University of Salento hosted the initiative in the picturesque scenario of the Convento degli Olivetani where prof. Terri Mannarini, partner of the RE.CRI.RE. project on behalf of the University of Salento, organized a public exhibition during which the project was presented through a variety of tools – such as posters, flyers and video – to citizens, schools students, families and even children in an interactive way that stimulated the interest and curiosity of the audience. The general framework of RE.CRI.RE., its research rationale, the instruments of data collection as well as the main results achieved after the first year of activities were accounted to the spectators with a privileged focus on the expected implications of RE.CRI.RE. for the design and enhancement of effective public policies at European level. Thanks to the friendly atmosphere of the Researcher’s night, RE.CRI.RE was shared with a non-expert public whereby a capturing story-telling that helped in explaining the ambitious aims of the project and its valuable goals.
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RECRIRE WORKING SEMINAR-DISSEMINATION IN CRETE – CRETE (GREECE), 17 June 2016

On Friday 17 June 2016, the UOC RE.CRI.RE. Research Team, consisting of Prof. Anastassios Matsopoulos, Ass. Professor of School Psychology in the Department of Preschool Education University of Crete and Polivios Psinas Associate Researcher, organised a two and half hours working seminar in collaboration with the local (Rethymnon) Director of Education to disseminate information about the project to 250 elementary education teachers.

The participants were mainstream teachers, specialty teachers (i.e special education, physical education, music) as well as headmasters and school counsellors. In this working seminar the UOC Research Team made a general presentation of the RE.CRI.RE. project focusing on its aims, goals, premises and structure. Also, the UOC case study entitled “Teachers’ evaluation in time of crisis: An opportunity for empowerment or a vulnerability factor? The challenge of policy making-A Greek case study” was thoroughly presented and was linked to the general rationale of the RECRIRE project.

At the end of the working seminar, a discussion with the group lead to fruitful conclusions and highlighted major and legitimate concerns of the local actors and stakeholders regarding the fundamental concept of the symbolic universes and the basic assumptions of RECRIRE and whether these are taken into consideration during the policy making process. Finally, the presentation aimed at giving incentives to the teachers about the potential benefits of their active involvement in the project and creating a network of volunteers and collaborators to participate in the research activities of the project starting in the Fall 2016. 20 teachers on the day of the seminar have expressed their desire to participate in the focus groups and gave us their contact information to further pursue our collaboration.

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Re.Cri.Re. Between the representation of the crisis and the crisis of the representation – Working Seminar – Faculty of Psychology UNED Madrid, May 31st 2016

The working seminar was structured in two parts. The first part consisted of an introduction carried out by Professor Jorge Castro. Project’s main arguments and goals, phases, theoretical framework and ongoing results on the analysis of symbolic universes were briefly presented and summarized. The second part opened the debate to the participants, who could express their doubts, suggestions and points of view regarding different aspects of the project (goals, theoretical framework, methodology and attended outputs).

The participants:

  • Florentino Blanco: Human Rights activist with Amnesty International. Psychology professor at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.
  • Ramón del Castillo: Advisory Board member and also member of the European Cultural Parliament. Philosophy professor and Vice-Dean of Research at UNED.
  • Pablo González: Economist and town councillor for PP (Spain’s right wing political party), Gijón local government (Asturias, in the North of Spain).
  • Melania Moscoso: Socio-cultural anthropologist. Social activist concerning functional diversity issues. Professor at Universidad del País Vasco.
  • Natalia Muñoz, town councillor for the new political party Ganemos in the city of Tres Cantos (Madrid); she comes from “The anti-austerity movement” in Spain, also referred to as “The 15-M Movement”, the “Indignants Movement” and “Take the Square”. Didactic activist concerning the shortcomings of Spanish Constitution, Treaty on European Union.
  • Pablo Nicolás: Priest and also member of Catholic NGO “Cáritas”.
  • Gabriel Santamaría: member of different ultra-conservative movements (catholic NGO’s such as “HazteOír” y “CitizenGo”) and team member for “Open Doors”, association working with refugees from Syria and Iraq.
  • Honorio Velasco: Advisory Board member. Professor of Social Anthropology at UNED.
08-06-2016

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki presents project Re.Cri.Re

On 20 May the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, partner of ALDA within the project Re.Cri.Re -Between the Representation of the Crisis and the Crisis of the Representation-, presented its design and aims at a working seminar at the Hellenic Center of Mental Health and Research.
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Evrinomy Avdi, Associate Professor in Clinical Psychology and Scientific Coordinator of Re.Cri.Re. on behalf of Aristotle University, together with her colleagues Anna Mylona and Ifigeneia Koutri, Associate Researchers, introduced the rationale of the project, described its goals, and presented the first results of Working Package 3.

Representatives from the Hellenic Center of Mental Health and Research and the Shelter for Abused Women, as well as representatives of other local stakeholders attended the event with great interest. A discussion was started regarding the effects of the economic crisis on Greek citizens’ life and its implications for mental health practices and service provision, as well as the links between the social-economic crisis in Greece and the demographic characteristics of the vulnerable population seeking professional help for psychological problems in recent years. Within this framework, Re.Cri.Re. was seen as helpful in suggesting innovative ways to conceptualize citizens’ changing psychosocial needs.

At the end of the seminar possible ways in which local stakeholders could get further involved in the project were presented, and all participants expressed their intention to support the progress of Re.Cri.Re by completing the ‘Views of Context’ questionnaire created in its framework.

If you also want to contribute to the success of the project, fill in and disseminate this questionnaire on how people represent the space they live in and how these representations are linked to their way of thinking and feeling. It is completely anonymous and only takes ten minutes to complete!

Questionnaire in all languages

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Between the representation of the crisis and the crisis of the representation How the crisis has changed the symbolic context of societes and european identites? – Workshop – April 28, 2016 Aix Marseille Université

A working seminar was organised at the Aix Marseille Université (France), on Thursday 28th Avril. A small number of cultural and social association members were invited to the seminar, with the aim of introducing RE.CRI.RE to participating members and to stimulate to fill. The seminar started with a detailed introduction by Alfonso SANTARPIA (associate professor at Aix-Marseille Université and member team of RE.CRI.RE in France) on the construction of European Identity. Firstly, he highlighted mythological dimension (for example, Europe’s myth or the history of the European Flag), philosophical and social dimension of the identity. Secondly, he focused his speech on several crises in Europe (immigration and Greek situation . Finally, after these introductions, He provided a detailed overview of the aims and details of RE.CRI.RE, with particular focus on the questionnaire VOC. This strategy has been used to mobilize people to fill in the questionnaire VOC and tests, important tools for the project.

There was in the group, Carole Le Cloîérac (Ingénieur d’études CNRS, Institut d’ethnologie méditerranééenne, européenne et comparative). She highlighted crucial role of the trans-disciplinary approach in the construction of the work packages.
The presentations were followed by detailed and opened discussion on French identity and European identity. There was a critique point on the French vote concerning the referendum in the 2005 where French people showed their opposition to the European project.

Useful links:
Poster

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Looking into the black box: local contexts and development policies, in time of crisis – Working Seminar – Roma Tre University, 27 April 2016

The social and economic crisis faced in last years challenged European countries and territories, in many ways: welfare systems, European identities, relations between regions and generations became more fragile.
The crisis challenges our tools for understanding reality, the possibility to build meanings and representations. In some cases, such as in some Italian areas, “crisis” is something durable: the prolonged inability to reverse the decline.
The “local” is still the ground where communities and policies mainly face the crisis, in positive or negative ways.
During the working seminar, three different research experiences will be presented and debated, in order to exchange methodologies and results concerning the role of policies in local development strategies.

The starting point will be the project HORIZON2020 – RE.CRI.RE. – Between the representation of the crisis and the crisis of the representation. RE.CRI.RE. explores the changes occurred in local cultures in Europe, in order to produce tools for policy-makers.
The premise of RE.CRI.RE. project is that local cultures may highly affect the effectiveness of policy implementation. Nevertheless, they are often a hidden field, unexplored or even totally ignored. Local cultures mediate the construction of meanings: which tools we have to know them and to include this knowledge in policy-making? RE.CRI.RE. project will be presented as a tool to approach public policies taking into account territorial analysis and local cultures analysis.

Secondly, during the seminar will be discussed the evaluation phase of policies, paying special attention to the ways in which “localities” build their own development path, interacting with higher levels of governance (regional, national and European). The project R.EV.E.S. – Reverse EValuation to Enhance local Strategies is part of the national strategy “Actions of support of the National System of Evaluation and of the Evaluation Teams” for the Cohesion Programme 2007-2013, implemented by FORMEZ PA.
Special focus will be devoted to Melpignano (LE, Italy) a Municipality in which policy-makers developed an effective strategy related to commons.
Thirdly, two members of GSSI (Gran Sasso Science Institute) will present the National Strategy for Inner Areas, in which they are involved as evaluators. The implementation of the strategy, goals definition and involved actors will be presented, together with local strategic documents.

The seminar is devoted to researchers, professors, students, PhD students interested in urban and regional studies, territorial policies, local cultures analysis and interdisciplinary approaches.

Useful links:
Playbill and Presentation

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Social Representations of Migrants and Refugees in the Greek-Cypriot Media – April 27, 2016 University of Cyprus

Τhe Genetic Social Psychology Lab of the Department of Psychology at the University of Cyprus hosted an event entitled “Social Representations of Migrants and Refugees in the Greek-Cypriot Media” on Wednesday, 27 April, 2016 during which the public was informed about the goals and preliminary findings of the RE.CRI.RE project.

Dr. Irini Kadianaki (Project Scientific Coordinator) introduced the RE.CRI.RE project and Drs. Maria Avraamidou and Maria Ioannou, and Elisavet Panagiotou presented the preliminary findings. Three external speakers contributed substantially to the event; Dr. Fabienne Baider (UCY) presented the rationale and preliminary findings of the Research Program C.O.N.T.A.C.T. which focuses on hate crime (Creating On line Network, monitoring Team and phone App to Counter hate crime Tactics”) in 10 different countries. Nathalie Alkiviadou, human rights expert and Head of Aequitas NGO presented legal aspects of hate speech as a crime across different contexts. Giorgos Kakotas from the Office of the Ombudsman discussed its Office’s mandate and efforts towards eliminating racism in the local media. Dr Charis Psaltis of the Department of Psychology (UCY) coordinated the event.

More than forty people including researchers, academics, NGO representatives, and students, joined the event and actively participated in the Questions and Answers session (Q&A) and the discussion that followed the presentations.

Useful links:
Press Release
Programme (Greek version)