Geography & Spatial Planning

The UniGR-Center for Border Studies welcomes Border Researches from Ukraine

May 9 is Europe Day, which is even celebrated as a holiday in Luxembourg! On this emblematic date in 1950, French Foreign Minister Robert Schumann presented his ideas for a new political and economic cooperation to prevent war between the nations of Europe. The speech known as the Schumann Declaration is now – 72 years later – again highly relevant and guiding for a Europe at peace. The assault on Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is an attack on Eastern Europe and on relations between the so-called West and Ukraine.

In this situation, it is once again increasingly the mission of border research to uncover the instrumentalizations of culture and history in the course of border shifts and border violations and to strengthen cooperation. Therefore, the UniGR-CBS welcomes at its sites Belval and Saarbrücken two colleagues from Ukraine, who are specialized in spatial and cultural border studies.

At the University of Luxembourg, Oleksiy Kiryukhin is working as part of a six-month fellowship from the Faculty of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences (FHSE). The geographer from the V.N. Karasin Kharkiv National University is the head of the Ukrainian-French Academic Center and specialized in cross-border cooperation issues in Europe. Oleksiy Kiryukhin is visiting the Greater Region for a second time, as he already conducted research in the fall of 2021 on territorial cohesion in border regions with colleagues from the UniGR-CBS site Liège (Belgium).

Alina Mozolevska is working at Saarland University in the context of a two-month fellowship of the Interreg VA project "Border Studies". The linguist and cultural studies scholar from the National Petro Mohyla Black Sea University in Mykolayiv is an associate professor at the philological institute in the Department of Romance Studies and specialized in cultural border studies, media studies, critical discourse analysis and text linguistics. Alina Mozolevska is also already familiar with the UniGR-CBS, especially through the German-Ukrainian cooperation project "Borderland Stories" ( in which the UniGR-CBS Master in Border Studies students participated and for which she was in 2021 the academic director.

Astrid Fellner and her team would also like to expand the cooperation in their current DAAD Eastern Partnership project "Bridging Borders". Together with some of the colleagues from National Petro Mohyla Black Sea University in Mykolayiv, who have in the meantime found refuge at Saarland University, the team in Saarbrücken is now looking more deeply into the topic of "Borders in Crisis" with questions of discursive, narrative and mediatic border struggles in Ukraine, Europe and North America. In this project, particular attention will be drawn to the special role of identity issues in this war, which is not only carried out in military violence on the territory of Ukraine, but is also strongly reflected in the cultural and linguistic sphere.


#StandWithUkraine #StopTheWar

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