At the Brandt School, diversity is a fact - and to us, this is a valuable asset. The diversity of the people at the Brandt School is reflected in various characteristics such as origin, age, professional and academic background. Our alumni come from around 100 countries and students from 30-40 different countries regularly take up their studies in the current MPP classes. They not only learn from faculty and with each other, but also from each other and our faculty from them.
Of course, our commitment to diversity is also reflected in the teaching at MPP. For example, our mandatory courses cover global case studies in "Comparative Public Policy", strategies of cross-cultural collaboration in "Management and Leadership", and heterodox approaches in "Economic Analysis and Modeling". We also offer courses with relevant focus, such as "Gender and Conflict" or a project group on "Advancing Gender-smart Climate Finance." In our public events, conferences and discussions, we take care to provide space for a diversity of voices and positions.
What we strive for is not mere diversity in numbers, but an inclusive community both in the classroom and beyond. We understand our commitment to diversity not as a one-time conceptual task, but as an ongoing process over years and generations of students, in constant resonance with changing social discourses and realities, as well as community needs.
Externally and internally guided team reflection on how diverse we are, how to achieve more inclusion of students on campus and in the city, what dilemmas the administration can face in the face of a very heterogeneous and diverse student body, and how to make teaching more open to non-Western research methods and scholarship.
Diversity workshop for the new MPP batch
The new MPP class of 2022-24 participated in a newly-designed diversity workshop for students during orientation week with three external trainers, themselves from very diverse backgrounds.
Diversity as an opportunity for transition
As part of the "Transitional Leadership Certificate," on which the Brandt School trained experienced leaders with two partner schools, Senior Brandt Fellow Carmen Niethammer introduced "Diversity and Leadership."
First post-pandemic on-site diversity workshop
The participants discussed the challenges of their studies and life in Germany, as well as strategies for overcoming differences of opinion. They learned concepts connecting conflict with prejudices and stereotypes. By reflecting on the power of communication and especially understanding the concepts of non-violent communication, as well as intercultural communication tools, they improved their ability to deal with disagreements.
Report on diversity and inclusion at Brandt School
In order to examine the state of diversity and inclusion at the Brandt School and to record recommendations for action, two external experts were commissioned to conduct interviews with students, faculty and administrative staff. The results will be directly incorporated into our daily work, our upcoming process towards more inclusion and, based on more awareness, an increased commitment to this also towards third parties.
Professionalization of the diversity workshop for students
In 2019, the workshop, which has already existed for years and focuses on topics such as cultural customs in Germany, culture shock upon arrival and especially intercultural communication, was raised to a new level with an external trainer company.
In her role as Vice President for International Affairs, Aletta Haniel Professor Dr. Grimm took the lead in drafting a new internationalization strategy for the University of Erfurt. The welcoming culture on campus plays an important role in this.
This timeline highlights only part of our commitment. We are also active in the committees of the university, advocating for diversity, internationalization and inclusion and, together with some partners, we advocate for a tolerant, cosmopolitan, inclusive community and a welcoming culture in Erfurt and Thuringia, e.g. with city authorities and members of the city council.