Convergence and divergence in Europe

„Konvergenz und Divergenz in Europäisierungsprozessen“ (10./11.06.2016)

Europe is converging on many formal levels - economic, political, legal. At the same time, however, it can be observed that Europe diverges instead of converges on many levels - culturally, linguistically, in the area of identities. This became obvious in the "Griechenlandkrise", for example, where attempts were made on the political-economic level to save the single currency, while at the same time long-forgotten resentments and prejudices broke out again and renationalisation tendencies could be observed on all sides. In the "Flüchtlingskrise", too, it became clear that Europe is still characterised by partly deep differences.

Convergence in the sense of standardisation and harmonisation is perceived as a thoroughly positive, desirable development that is supposed to lead to greater unity and thus to more prosperity and solidarity. But is convergence really desirable and meaningful in all areas?

This was the starting point of the CEUS conference, which took place on 10 and 11 June 2016 on the campus of Saarland University under the scientific leadership of the two CEUS directors Prof. Peter Dörrenbächer and Prof. Christian Scholz. Scientists from Germany, Luxembourg and Austria discussed across disciplines whether divergences, i.e. processes moving away from each other, can indeed release new development potentials. Therefore, they examined the formation of a European identity from a historical and sociological perspective, analysed cultural transfer processes and linguistic developments and discussed questions of regional development as well as political-economic, legal and media Europeanisation.

Numerous members of the university's European focus were involved in the conference. In addition, there were guests from the Universität Wien, the Hochschule der Medien Stuttgart, the Europa-Kolleg Hamburg, the Europa-Universität Flensburg, the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen and the UniGR partner universities Luxembourg and Kaiserslautern.


"Bilder von Europa" – CEUS workshop (11.11.2017)
Following the conference, the intercultural design thinking workshop "Bilder von Europa" took place on 11 November 2017. Students from European and non-European countries dealt with questions about the current state and future development of Europe.


The results of the conference and the workshop were published in the conference volume "Europa jenseits des Konvergenzparadigmas. Divergenz – Dynamik – Diskurs", edited by Christian Scholz, Peter Dörrenbächer and Anne Rennig.

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The workshop and the publication project were supported by the ASKO EUROPA-STIFTUNG, the Internationali­sierungs­fonds der Uni­versität, the Ministerium für Finanzen und Europa, and the Staats­kanzlei des Saar­landes.