Daniel Mekonnen as visiting researcher at the FIBW

As of April 1st, 2012 Daniel Mekonnen will work at the FIBW as a visiting researcher. He obtained his LLD from the University of the Free State (2008). He has worked in a number of European universities as a post-doctoral researcher and lecturer. Recently, he was a Bank of Ireland Fellow at the Irish Centre for Human Rights (National University of Ireland, Galway). He is a recipient of a Georg Forster Post-Doctoral Fellowship awarded by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

Alexander von Humbold Foundation


Integration of Refugees in the Schwalm-Eder District

Kilometres through the desert, for days in a small boat, on foot over borders – the means of reaching Europe is different for every refugee. Likewise, the reasons and situations leading to escape differ amongst refugees. For the most part, it is war, hunger and poverty that drive these refugees to risk everything. Arriving in Germany, their newly-found liberty is, however, accompanied by a series of new challenges. The refugee's status is uncertain, the fear of deportation ever-present. Because refugees have no rights to political and social co-operation, they remain a fringe group in society. In addition, traumatic experiences have often been an aspect of escape and hinder refugees from successfully establishing themselves socially. Young adult refugees lack the self-assurance to simply be capable of approaching others. In their homelands, social activities such as sports, music, crafts and active exchange of ideas played an integral role in the lives of these youth.

In response to this issue, we have decided to uncover new municipal integration potentials and, moreover, have brought to life the project „Extraction of integration mediators for young adult refugees in the Schwalm Eder Area“.

The project is carried out by the Felsberger Institute for Education and Science (inc. FIBW), and by the initiative ‘Violence does not go!’, and it is promoted by the federal program ‘Tolerance - competence strengthen promoted.’ The aim of the project is to win sensitization and motivation, means of integration for young adult refugees in the Schwalm Eder District.

The project will include interactive workshops, among other events, intended to assist with the process of integration (term till December, 2013). If you would like to receive more information about the project and workshops, you can contact Alexander Kliewer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


The Felsberger Institut e.V. is expanding its research activities and co-operation with Latin America

In November 2011 the Felsberger Institut’s director, Dr. Hartmut Quehl, visited Nicaragua and Colombia to expand the Felsberger Institut e.V. research activities in Latin America as well as to make arrangements on common research projects and prepare co-operation agreements.


An agreement for co-operation was finalised with the Martin-Luther-King-Institute at the UPOLI in Managua, Nicaragua. In addition, an action-plan was enacted within the common research project concerning both the social- and everyday history of the Nicaraguan war and 'demobilisation and reintegration'. To this end, a working group has been formed,  and Mr. Jesus Martin Torres Tableada has been recruited as a new member of the Felsberger Institut-Team. Initial investigations for future field research were carried out in León and at the border with Honduras. A basic contract on the joint research programme is currently in development and will be signed in 2012.

Dr Quehl's itinerary also included a visit to Colombia. Potential joint academic activities and research projects in the field of migration were discussed at the Universidad del Rosario. As in Nicaragua, the completion of a co-operation agreement is scheduled for 2012.



Under the tree of the word

During the 8th Iberian Conference on African Studies – ICAS8 we would like to reflect on the deep political, social, economic and cultural transformations that Africa is experiencing nowadays, as well as the reconfiguration of its relations with the rest of the world. They are provoking complex local answers, which imply resistances as well as integration in regional and global dynamics.



Dr. Hartmut Quehl holds talks in nicaragua

From November 6 to 9, 2010 the director of Felsberger Institut e.V., Dr Hartmut Quehl, visited together with Mrs Natalie Charkow the "Instituto Martin Luther King" in Nicaragua to hold preliminary talks about cooperation possibilities between the two institutions in the field of academic research. The "Instituto Martin Luther King" is part of the Polytechnical University of Managua (UPOLI) and works in political sciences. It has a long experience in the research of the Nicaraguan war and in the practical fields of peace building and reconciliation between the former Nicaraguan warring parties and the civil society.
During the meetings both sides discussed the plan of realising a common research project on a comparative social history of wars. Together with Ref. José Miguél Torres and Martín Torres, Dr. Quehl and Mrs Charkow paid a visit to the settlement of Nueva Guinea where IMLK has played an active role in the reconciliation process. First meetings with ex-combatants and members of the former warring parties were held.
Felsberger Institut e.V. and IMLK agreed upon a second meeting in Nicaragua in 2011 in order to discuss the realisation of the research project and ist parctical implementation