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Ascona Summer School 2021

The Ascona Interface Summer School: Anthropological Engagement beyond Academia

June 7-12, 2021





During the five-day course, students will be interacting with practitioners engaged in various forms of applications of anthropological knowledge to address social, cultural, political, economic, and environmental challenges. Participants will discuss and reflect on a wide range of critical topics and case studies of local, global, and international engagements informed by anthropological analysis, research, theory, practice, and critique. The course involves a horizontal modality of learning where students, together with practitioners, are encouraged to explore, reflect upon, and further develop their individual or collective projects of anthropological engagement. The Summer School, the first of its kind in Switzerland, aims to offer an enabling and non-hierarchical learning environment through presentations, discussions, group work and exercises.


For this year’s program, highlights include: issues of violent conflict and processes of transition and transformation from authoritarian regimes to liberal democracy; doing and learning from collaborative practice-based research in addressing discrimination in Switzerland; exploring methodologies and ontologies in alliance-building through co-creative multimodal media engagements; and confronting ethical, methodological and epistemic questions in situating an ethnographic practice faced with tensions and contradictions between engagement and advocacy.  Recommended reading materials and related resources will be provided before and during the Summer School.

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Film on SEG-Interface Ascona Summer School participants’ takeaways