From February 25 to March 3, we at the NRO were co-organisers of the eighth annual educational exchange of students of St. Petersburg State University and German students, which was organised together with the European Academy Otzenhausen.
Last summer Russian participants were in Otzenhausen, and now more than 30 German participants came to St. Petersburg for one week. This year’s theme was related to the issue of Russia’s membership to the Council of Europe and more broadly to Europe as a whole. The programme focused on topics such as domestic and foreign policy, the Russian media in Europe, the complex aspects of Russian history, everyday life and civil society in modern Russia. In order to get to know the “real” Russia, the participants travelled to Veliki Novgorod for one day, where they visited, among other places, the University of Novgorod and the Centre for Contemporary Art. During the trip, the students also took part in a public discussion in the Golitsyn loft, went on a search for the blockades of Leningrad, visited the organisations “Memorial” and “Open Space”, and went for a walk with experts to different parts of St. Petersburg. At the end of the study trip all participants met at the NRO for a general discussion of the results and feedback.
Now, due to the coronavirus epidemic, all trips are cancelled for spring 2020, but we will be happy to organise similar programmes in St. Petersburg in the future. Write to us if you have ideas and interest in cooperation.