From May 20-30, 2014, I had a wonderful invitation to stay in Cimo, Switzerland (a village just outside Lugano), with Peter Praxmarer, the executive director of the European Master in Intercultural Communication (EMICC), which is coordinated through the Università della Svizzera italiana (known in English as the University of Lugano). He also collaborates with, and teaches for, the Master of Advanced Studies in Intercultural Communication (MIC), as well as a number of other European universities.
My goal was to learn more about the EMICC, an intensive and international semester-long study of intercultural communication jointly offered by ten European universities since 2002. This program is a model of international collaboration for graduate education, and an innovative form of what in the USA is called “study abroad,” ensuring that students not only learn about intercultural communication at a theoretical level, but also practice it. We were able to discuss not only some of the logistics of this program, but also shared interests in intercultural communication more generally, as well as inventing future possibilities for collaboration.
While in Lugano, I was able to connect also with Prof. Bertil Cottier, Director of the Institute for Public Communication at USI. Trained as a lawyer, one of his current interests is in data protection and new technologies. As it turns out, the Institute will be conducting a search for a faculty member specializing in intercultural communication shortly – keep an eye on this website for the details.
I also met with Alexandra Stang, a graduate student at the University of Duisburg-Essen (in Germany) currently studying the Intercultural Campus platform, “an international university network created for intercultural learning.” She was in town to interview Peter Praxmarer, and took the opportunity to interview me as well.
Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, Director
Center for Intercultural Dialogue