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WIPCAD-Welcome Week, October 2012, Potsdam / Germany

In October 2012, the eight new WIPCAD doctoral researchers were warmly welcomed at University of Potsdam with an academic get-together of a rather unusual kind. Though at first the PhD students were introduced at the Department of Economics and Social Sciences by the Dean of faculty, Prof. Dr. Theresa Wobbe, as well as the WIPCAD professors. Spokesperson Prof. Dr. Klaus H. Goetz emphasised the research group’s vision and aims. After these constitutive words WIPCAD researchers, post-doc researcher and doctoral researchers “speed-dated” each other. Unsurprisingly, the small talks turned out to be of academic nature and mainly centred on the fellows’ doctoral proposals, rather than their favourite leisure activities.

The next days were filled with social activities in Potsdam and Berlin - the eight doctoral fellows explored the university‘s campus with a quiz rally, and then took guided tours on Potsdam’s historic sights as well as Berlin’s political urban topography. On many occasions, the PhD students chitchatted on their research agendas, corresponding academic interests and possible future projects within the WIPCAD context. “It feels as if we had our first colloquium already while taking a walk through the Parc Sanssoucci”, a fellow commented.

To complete the Welcome Week’s program all doctoral researchers joined the interdisciplinary PhDay of the Potsdam Graduate School and used this chance for networking with their peers. While the first week of greetings, encounters and information sessions was over by October 12th, the next week started with the workaday life of a WIPCAD PhD student. As one of them puts it: “After the Welcome Week was a great success I am now eager to gain new theoretical and methodical inspirations from the ambitious course program for my PhD thesis and looking forward to discuss and work on my initial ideas of my dissertation in our offices on campus.”