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4. October 2013
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From 16-19 September 2013, the University of Wroclaw and the Wroclaw congress centre held an international conference on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of Academia Europaea. This independent European academy brings together around 3,000 top scholars in an attempt to steer European politics  in the direction of securing the conditions for the development of the humanities and natural and social sciences unhindered by EU bureaucracy, neoliberalism and nationalism. The topic of the conference was European Science and Scholarship Looking Ahead – Challenges of the Next 25 Years. Plenary sessions included an introductory roundtable (featuring Helga Nowotny, Martin Rees, André Mischke, Anne Glover and Hans-Joachim Schnellnhuber), a talk by Volkswagen Foundation representative Wilhelm Krull on European tendencies towards scholarly excellence and innovativeness, polemical thoughts of geophysicist Vincent Courtillot on the role of consensus and debate in scientific discovery, and a discussion on climate change in the Anthropocene (featuring André Berger, Mike Burton, Matthew Edgeworth, Eckhart Ehlers and Jérôme Chappellaz). Scholarly challenges were addressed also in parallel sessions on paradigm shifts in the humanities and social sciences. In the session organised by Svend Erik Larsen, the head of the Literary & Theatrical Studies section of the academy, Marko Juvan gave a talk on the methodological foundations of a project on the GIS-based mapping of the Slovenian literary culture.

The beginning and end of the conference were marked by plenary lectures by two outstanding historians who recently aroused some controversy: the Erasmus Medal recipient Norman Davies highlighted histories of transient empires and moving borders as reflected in the city of Wroclaw, and Jonathan Israel discussed the radical Enlightenment.