The Visegrad Summer School is a two-week training series for young people from the Visegrad Group and Eastern Europe countries, carried out annually in Kraków since 2002. The initiator and organiser of the event is the Villa Decius Association. This year’s edition of the project will be held for the thirteenth time, on 29 June – 12 July. The aim of the project is to deepen the knowledge on regional and global challenges, eliminate mutual stereotypes, build ties and friendly relationships.
This year, applications have been sent by 367 students, PhD students, young teachers and journalists from four countries of the Visegrad Group and other countries of Central and Eastern Europe. The 13th edition of the project will be attended by 45 participants from 12 countries: Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Serbia and Ukraine. They will be students of the social sciences (18 people), law (8 people), European studies (8 people), philology (5 people), philosophy (4 people), economics (1 person), history (1 person).
This year’s edition will include the following experts: an eminent Bulgarian historian – Alexander Kiossev; the deputy director of the Visegrad Fund – György Varga; a female member of the Slovak Parliament – Magdaléna Vášáryová; General Mieczysław Bieniek; Prof. Michal Vašečka; a Belarusian translator, writer and dissident – Lavon Barščeŭski and a sociologist and philosopher – Michał Łuczewski. Some of the debates, lectures and meetings will be open to the public.
The inaugural lecture called “Sharing Europe” will be given by Prof. Maciej Szpunar, Advocate General at the Court of Justice of the European Union, former Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. There will also be a traditional debate of diplomats of V4 countries and the Representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland. This time it will be devoted to the achieved success and challenges of the 25th anniversary of the political transformation of the Visegrad Group countries.
Some courses will be devoted to the current socio-political issues of Central and Eastern Europe, including the following issues: security, economic cooperation, social potential of the region and the role of grass-roots social initiatives in the public space. Controversial issues and questions concerning the assessment of the transformation and remembrance policy are intended to stimulate discussion on the legacy of the past and challenges of the present. The programme will also include topics related to the current events in Ukraine.
The block devoted to culture will include reflections on the relationship of technology and art, a study visit in the Małopolska region and alternative sightseeing-city game in Kraków.
On 9 July, there will also be an open “Visegrad Film Marathon” presenting the most interesting documentaries and animations from the region.
The Visegrad Summer School is a part of the Platform for Advanced Studies – a project co-financed by Narodowy Bank Polski. The main objective of the project is to develop a platform for advanced studies, which is alternative to regulation studies and is aimed at acquiring advanced knowledge in the area of culture and economics, including the role and mission of the Narodowy Bank Polski, national and European financial policy and shaping of attitudes favourable to international cooperation and the development of entrepreneurship.