What is the idea behind the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA School of Governance? What is it that defines this School, and in what ways is it unique? When we started this project several years ago, what was it we hoped to achieve? These are the questions that we continue to ask, and the questions that put this enterprise to the test.
We want to analyze and design. With the foundation of the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA School of Governance, we have broadened Alexander von Humboldt’s notion of unity in research and teaching to also include the idea of a ‘forum.’ It is within this forum that the development and transfer of theoretical knowledge provides the basis for action. The School’s new threefold approach to study is what will inspire students to act on those problems that exist in the spaces between politics, business and civil society.
We want to be a catalyst for reform. The goal of the praxis-oriented Master of Public Policy degree programme offered by the European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder) and the Humboldt University Berlin’s HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA School of Governance is the conception and successful implementation of concrete projects. The goal of study at the School is to provide students with the means to theoretically base and reflect upon the possibility to effect real and lasting societal changes: A fundraising concept that remains on the drawing board is of little use, but in application one is able to test its potential to bring about necessary reforms.
In this way, the HUMBOLDT-VIADRINA School of Governance is an institution built upon diverse foundations: we conduct applied research and offer a practically oriented Master of Public Policy degree, while, in acting as a forum, we bring people together who collectively address the challenges posed by society today. We are an independent and critical actor, who contributes, becomes involved and, ultimately, effects change. We will measure actions against actual outcomes, not only relying upon abstract, theoretical standards.