Two full scholarships from the "1669 Wissenschafft Gesellschaft - Förderkreis der Universität Innsbruck"
After last year's success, we are very happy to announce that the "1669 Wissenschafft Gesellschaft - Förderkreis der Universität Innsbruck" is again providing two full scholarships to participate in the "Internationale Sommeruniversität" in Beer Sheva. Congratulations to Julia Scholati and Marco Steger who will spend together with three other students of the University of Innsbruck six weeks at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev! AIANI wishes all of them save travels, a successful summer school program and a great time in Israel.
Dr. Samuel Gazit, Director of the International Relations Office at Braude College, visited the University of Innsbruck in June. He met with Rektor Tilmann Märk, AIANI's Academic Director Prof. Ivo Hajnal, Dr. Barbara Tasser and Dr. Mathias Schennach from the International Services. Furthermore Dr. Gazit took a look at some research projects of students at the Tech Campus and discussed future collaboration possibilities with colleagues from various departments e.g. Applied Mathematics, Geometry and CAD, Mechatronics and Pharmaceutical Technology.
AIANI Guest Lecture “Nullius in Verba: Skepticism in the Epistemology of Testimony”, and international workshop “Believing on Authority?”, with Dr. Arnon Keren (Haifa/Oxford)
Conspiracy theories, fake news, so-called ‘alternative facts’– modern societies, technologically advanced as never before, are increasingly dispensing with truth. A massive decay of fundamental values of the enlightenment, of rational thinking, and of intellectual honesty has started to infiltrate public and political discourse. Philosophers deal with such problems by engaging in epistemology: What is knowledge? How can we distinguish good from bad reasons? What makes a belief justified and rational, what constitutes a good argument? Social epistemology in particular explores the interpersonal dimensions of knowledge acquisition and information transfer. Social epistemologists investigate the norms of factual assertion; they examine concepts such as expertise, epistemic injustice, and trust (and mistrust) in what others – including real or fake authorities – tell us.
These were the topics of a workshop with (and a public lecture by) Dr. Arnon Keren, Department of Philosophy, University of Haifa, and member of the Oxford Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics. The events were hosted by the Institute for Christian Philosophy and organized by Federica Malfatti and Christoph Jäger. Keren’s work on intellectual authority has inspired much recent work on the social dimensions of knowledge, so it was no surprise that both his lecture and the workshop were very well received. Other workshop speakers included Jan Constantin (Köln), Katherine Dormandy (Innsbruck), Christian Feldbacher-Escamilla (Düsseldorf), Johannes Findl (Barcelona), Christoph Jäger (Innsbruck), and Federica Malfatti (Innsbruck). A major result of the workshop was that, although there is widespread need to rely on others’ expertise, critical and autonomous thinking are indispensable for putting us in a good position with respect to the truth.
International Workshop “Approaches to Ethical Challenges in Business and Economics: Religious and Cultural Contributions“
On March 1, an international workshop on "Approaches to Ethical Challenges in Business and Economics" took place at the University of Innsbruck. The event was organized by AIANI, the research center "Cultural Encounters - Cultural Conflicts" and the College of Management Academic Studies (COMAS) in Israel. The aim of the workshop was to start a discussion on the contribution that historical writings can make to current issues of economic ethics. Prof. Dr. Andreas Exenberger chaired the interdisciplinary workshop that included lectures by Prof. Benjamin Gidron (COMAS), Rabbi Barry Leff (Prof. Nürnberg), Prof. Franz Segbers (University of Marburg), Prof. Wilhelm Guggenberger and Prof. Richard Weiskopf (University of Innsbruck ) and a final panel discussion.
The Unit of Steel Construction and Mixed Building Technology was happy to host Prof. Daniel Rittel from the Technion in Haifa as AIANI-Fellow from 28.01.-12.02.2017. During his stay in Innsbruck, Prof. Rittel held a guest lecture with the title “Adiabatic shear across the scales: the engineer’s perspective”. In addition, Prof. Rittel held a series of private lectures for the staff members of the Steel Construction and Mixed Building Technology department about the failure of materials. Besides the lectures, topics including fatigue, fracture and general failure analysis were the subject of daily discussions.
Being Prof. Rittel’s first visit to Innsbruck, the working group was happy to show him the beauty of Innsbruck including a visit to the Seegrube and an introduction to Austrian winter sport activities.
As for the near future, the working group is looking forward to the second part of Prof. Rittel's visit, when he will join the department again for two weeks. Furthermore, one of the working group’s PhD students is planning to visit Prof. Rittel’s Laboratory for a research stay soon.
AIANI Guest Lecture "Between Individualism and Collectivism: Guiding Arab Social Workers in Israel through the Professional Socialization Process"
Romain Jammal-Abboud from the School of Social Work at Haifa University was an AIANI-Fellow at the Department of Educational Science at the University of Innsbruck. She was invited by Prof. Alfred Berger to work on a joint project and to hold a guest lecture on the topic „Between Individualism and Collectivism: Guiding Arab Social Workers in Israel through the Professional Socialization Process”. Ms. Jammal-Abboud presented her research and talked about the experiences and challenges of Arab social workers at parent-child centers in Israel as well as the importance of a cultural context that comes along with this field of work.
Public Space Allocation per person (PSA), Network Density (ND), and Average Destination Distance (ADD). Prof. Hillel Schocken has been Principal at “Schocken Architects” since its establishment in 1978, leading projects in a large variety of building types and programs, including Urban Planning, Museums, Educational facilities, Offices, Housing, Industry and Conservation. Prior to his obtaining his diploma of the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London he earned a B.Sc. in Industrial Engineering and Management at the Technion in Haifa. In parallel to his professional activity, Schocken is an Associate Professor of Architecture at the Azrieli School of Architecture at the Tel Aviv University and served as its director between 2004 and 2008. Throughout his career he has been teaching in Architecture schools throughout the world.
On December 12, 2016, Dr. Alon Segev held a guest lecture on “Hannah Arendt – The Jewish Writings” at the Department of Philosophy. In his lecture, Dr. Segev exposed the basic assumption in Hannah Arendt’s The Jewish Writings, and discussed her critique of Jewish life and the Zionist entity—later the Jewish state—in Palestine. Dr. Segev suggested, that Arendt´s basic assumption is that politics could only exist as a dynamic process, as an interplay between different players with different worldviews and interests. Thus, politics could not be reduced to a state of inertia. According to Arendt, adherence to such inertia would lead to the destruction of politics and the loss of any chance to conduct a normal and fully productive life. The Zionist movement – as Dr. Segev presented - was fixed from its very inception in a state of inertia and thus introduced into its own definition of a permanent antagonism toward other nations. Dr. Segev discussed what this means for the State of Israel and what Hannah Arendt thought about this topic in her writings. He presented Arendt’s main claims and then criticized them by pointing at the merits and flaws in her thesis. The guest lecture took place during the course “Sozialphilosophie und Politische Philosophie: Hannah Arendts Vita Activa“, taught by assoz.-Prof. Dr. Andreas Oberprantacher, MA.
Prof. Liliane Weissberg visited the University of Innsbruck in November 2016. The Professor of German and Comparative Literature (Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor in Arts and Science) from the University of Pennsylvania is an expert on German-Jewish Literature and focused extensively also on the Holocaust. Liliane Weissberg has taught courses on the relationship between trauma and memory, and thinkers who have written on the Holocaust such as Hannah Arendt and Karl Löwith.
She wrote on the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, Holocaust memorial sites in Germany and elsewhere, and individual figures such as Charlotte Salomon, just to give one example.
In Innsbruck she gave different guest lectures on topic ranging from “Interviewing the Victim: Changing Media and the Documentation of the Holocaust from the American Liberator´s Accounts to Wire and Video Tapes, TV Series, and Beyond”, to “Postcards from the Avant-garde: Else Laser Schüler in Exchange with Franz Marc”, “Writing Before the Shoah, and Reading After: Charlotte Salomon’s ‘Life or Theater’ and its Reception” to “Sigmund Freud liest Lessing: Die Parabel von den drei Ringen”.
Prof. Weissberg came as AIANI-Fellow to Innsbruck and was hosted by the Brenner Archiv. Her stay was supported by the City of Innsbruck.