101047919 — The Ring of Mediterranean: Regional Studies — ERASMUS-JMO-2021-HEI-TCH-RSCH (AGREEMENT NUMBER – 101047919 — The Ring of Mediterranean: Regional Studies)
Project acronym: MEDITERreg
Project duration: 1 March 2022 – 28 February 2025 EU funding instrument: EU-funded ERASMUS+ Programme, Jean Monnet, with the support of the European Neighbourhood Instrument
Project Summary: The Mediterranean region is the most important for the EU, although the EU has a strong presence in both the Baltic and the Black Sea. However, the Mediterranean is the cradle of European civilization, and now it is the source of the greatest challenges for this organization. Therefore, interest in EU policy in this region will only increase and as the North – South abyss grows, it will become increasingly relevant for the real politics of states and international organizations. Odesa I. I. Mechnikov National University (ONU) is the most suitable place in Ukraine to create a separate module on the Mediterranean within the existing MA program.
The International Relations Department already has a strong tradition of studying the Black Sea region, however, another tradition was established almost 30 years ago when Arabic, Greek, and Turkish languages were first taught here. The moment has come when from studying only the Mediterranean languages we should move as quickly as possible to studying the whole complex of problems associated with this region. For Ukraine, the experience of relations between the Mediterranean countries and the EU has become even more relevant today, because due to the conflict with Russia we could not entry into the EU quickly. It is important not only for scientists, but for the entire Ukrainian society to understand: how to build relations without the hope of the full EU membership? What the EU can give Ukraine? What dangers the future holds for us? It seems that as the instability in Ukraine increases these problems are also becoming more and more important for the EU. From the perspective of higher education, such focus has been reflected in a number of projects and partnerships of ONU such as the development of European studies in Mediterranean, the promotion of good governance in the neighbourhood, and the exchange of best practices with partner universities.
The Faculty of International Relations, Political Science and Sociology has emerged over the past 25 years as a regional hub for research and teaching on the European studies, area studies, transition processes, and area languages. In the light of its specific expertise, the Faculty represents a natural fit to develop the tools necessary to make sense of the changing reality. This translates into the creation of a medium that pulls the strength from the Faculty’s existing teaching and research infrastructure and combines it with the innovative experiences from EU Member states, their Mediterranean partners, and Ukraine. The Faculty is a home to English-language master programme in International Relations, Social Communications and Regional Studies. Its goal is to prepare the future professionals who could potentially join national or even European services or diplomacies. For such young professionals critically assessing the evolution of the relationship with the EU will be a key not only to understand tomorrow’s national and European policies in the field, but also envision and shape them. The proposed module has the aim to create new knowledge and learning tools related to Europeanization towards Mediterranean. The context that requires such effort is one in which the normative power of European Union is increasingly under stress and challenged by competing models of regionalism.
The module is led by the Odesa I. I. Mechnikov National University in Ukraine and includes a set of diverse partners from EU Member states, their Mediterranean partners, and Ukrainian partners. This Jean Monnet action is functional to the creation and the support of the “Mediterranean” module in the master’s programme in “International Relations, Social Communications and Regional Studies” at the Faculty of International Relations, Political Science and Sociology, Odesa I. I. Mechnikov National University. Previously, the Faculty participated in Jean Monnet projects as partner organization. Now, having clear understanding of Jean Monnet values and objectives, the Faculty applies for the first time as a host organization with its MEDITERreg module. Within the framework of the module, emphasis will be given to coherently and synergically integrated innovative methods of teaching, bi-directional interactivity, and blended learning. The combination of 4 new courses with other important activities creates complex and comprehensive approach toward the study of Mediterranean as a heterogeneous region which includes a variety of countries, cultures, traditions as well as political evolution and experiences. The module will also strengthen significantly the Regional and EU Studies in the Faculty’s research with a specific and detailed understanding of the Mediterranean as a whole and this dimension of the EU neighbourhood policy. The “MEDITERreg” project pays special attention to its various online activities and resources. Online courses and workshops, e-books, audio recordings and other digital materials will be easily available to different group of participant on the project’s website. This will ensure successful realization of all project’s objectives in the time of Covid-19 pandemic, when physical movements of individuals is limited. The partnership with NGO’s and think-tanks within and outside Ukraine will contribute to disseminate the results of the module and its related best-practices beyond the context of the ONU. Moreover, the partnership with the Diplomatic Academy of Ukraine at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (DAU) will provide the chance to expand, in the Ukrainian context, societal awareness of the Europeanization process and its fluid connection to the enlargement process and the dimension of neighbourhood.
Target groups: ONU students and exchange students, students, young researchers, and professionals from the EU, Mediterranean countries and Ukraine, group of beneficiaries includes ONU teaching staff members, and the broader teaching community in Ukraine and Mediterranean countries
Grant holder: ODESKIY NACIONALNIY UNIVERSITET IMENI I. I. MECHNIKOVA
Project goals and specific tasks: Revised course “Country Studies through Language”; new courses “Regional Studies”, “EU policy towards Mediterranean region”, “Regional Politics and Security in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean”, and “Migration Process in Mediterranean”; new MOOCs “Regional Studies”, “EU policy towards Mediterranean region”, “Regional Politics and Security in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean”, and “Migration Process in Mediterranean”.
- Project coordination meeting: Kick-off meeting, distribution of roles, and creation of Quality Assurance Board Discussion on Module logo and short description for website. The module online platform will be hosted at ONU domain, and continuously and systematically updated until the end of the project.
- Curriculum development: Development of four new courses “Regional Studies”, “EU policy towards Mediterranean region”, “Regional Politics and Security in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean”, and “Migration Process in Mediterranean”
- Quality Assurance meeting: Discussion of QA board’s report and implementation of QA board’s suggestions. The meetings will be held twice per each year of the project.
- Master classes: Preparation, dissemination, and implementation of eight master classes involving scholars and civil society representatives (video taped).
- One-day awareness seminars: Eight awareness seminars at partner organizations that will ensure dissemination and engagement with the didactical materials and practical teaching experiences collected and developed within the framework of the proposed module by the partnering experts involved in the project, as well as a wider audience of colleagues. The seminars will therefore ensure active and full-scale usage of the developed didactic materials not only on framework of the MOOCs, but also other courses and activities offered by the partner universities.
- MEDITERreg Graduate Conferences: Preparation, dissemination, and implementation of 1-day MEDITERreg Graduate Conferences for master’s students and early stage researchers
- “Country Studies through Language” course implementation: Implementation, evaluation, follow-up and dissemination of course “Country Studies through Language”
- Implementation, evaluation, follow-up and dissemination of four new courses “Regional Studies”, “EU policy towards Mediterranean region”, “Regional Politics and Security in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean”, and “Migration Process in Mediterranean” MOOCs development: Development, implementation, evaluation, follow-up and dissemination of four new MOOCs “Regional Studies”, “EU policy towards Mediterranean region”, “Regional Politics and Security in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean”, and “Migration Process in Mediterranean”.
- The E-book on didactics: The E-book on didactics will focus on theoretical and practical aspects of regionalism, EU policy towards Mediterranean region, different types of political and security interrelation, risks and threats in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean. The contributors from various disciplines cover these topics.
- The monograph on Regionalism in Mediterranean: The monograph is planned with the participation of 4 key participants of this project and analysts from partner Universities, but also the involvement of young scientists and PhD students from ONU interested in the development of this topic in Ukraine. The proposed structure will include 7 or 8 sections highlighting the most pressing gaps in the development of the Mediterranean.
Spring Semester - 2022
QA board created at the beginning of the project QA Chairperson: Dean of the FIRPS Ph.D. (Politісal Sciences) Viktor Glebov:
Vice-Dean of the FIRPS Prof Dr Svitlana Koch
Responsible Editor of the scientific journal “International and Political Studies” Prof Dr Yuliia Uzun
Preparation of four new courses
“Regional Studies”, Prof Dr Olga Brusylovska
EU policy towards Mediterranean region, Dr, Associate Professor Iryna Maksymenko
Regional Politics and Security in the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean”, Dr, Associate Professor Alla Zakharchenko
Migration Process in Mediterranean, Dr, Associate Professor Yuliia Maistrenko
Implementation, evaluation, follow-up and dissemination of the course “Regional Studies”, Prof Dr Olga Brusylovska:
Guest lecture of PhD student Massimo D’Angelo (Loughborough University London) for MA students of the Department of International Relations, April 28, 2022:
Guest lecture of Prof Dr Ali Bilgic (Loughborough University London) for MA students of the Department of International Relations, May 11, 2022:
Implementation, evaluation, follow-up and dissemination of the course “Country Studies through Language”
Country Studies through Language (Arabian), Dr, Assistant Professor Karina Kuleshova
Country Studies through Language (Greek), Dr, Associate Professor Oksana Snigovska:
Guest lecture of Dr Theodosios Koukouvinos (Greece) for MA students of the Department of International Relations, April 6, 2022:
Country Studies through Language” (Turkish) Assistant Professor Yuliia Tarasiuk
Preparation, dissemination, and implementation of 1-day MEDITERreg Graduate Conference for master’s students and early stage researchers:
1st MEDITERreg Graduate Conference for master’s students and early stage researchers
The scientific conference for master's students and young researchers studying in the specialty 291 International Relations, Public Communications and Regional Studies was held within the framework of the project 101047919 - MEDITERreg "THE RING OF MEDITERRANEAN: REGIONAL STUDIES". The Jean Monnet Module (Grant type ERASMUS-JMO-2021-MODULE) is implemented by the Department of International Relations and headed by the chief of the Department Olga Brusylovska. The conference was held online on May 26, 2022. Among the issues discussed at the conference, the analysis of the theory and practice of regionalism in the Mediterranean occupied a prominent place. Key words: theory of regionalism, regional studies, Mediterranean.