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EASP – European Association of Social Psychology

Report on EASP Brief Summer School 2023

08.11.2023, by Media Account in meeting report

EASP Brief Summer School 2023
EASP Brief Summer School 2023

The Brief Summer School 2023 in Kraków brought together a diverse group of participants, most of whom aspired to pursue careers in academia after completing their PhDs. The competitive academic landscape can often be daunting, but this short summer school fostered a sense of collaboration and collective growth, leaving a lasting impact on all of us.

Nevertheless (and I think that I can speak for everyone there) after the Brief Summer School we ended up having a feeling of collaboration and joint advancement. That’s the magic of the summer schools, bringing everyone together and creating friendship and/or potential collaborators, as everyone that has attended a summer school says.

1. The Briefness of the Summer School

One common sentiment shared during breaks and in the hallways was the awareness of the short duration of the program. The excitement was palpable, but we knew that our time together was limited before the EASP 2023 conference began. This sense of brevity motivated us to quickly connect with fellow attendees, introducing ourselves to colleagues from other workshops and creating a more familiar and friendly environment.

2. The workshops

The summer school featured four workshops, each led by outstanding scholars:
a. A Psychosocial Look at Economic Disparities (Rosa Rodríguez-Bailón, University of Granada)
b. Grounded Cognition and Implicit Social Cognition: The Case of Approach/Avoidance Action Tendencies (Dominique Muller, University of Grenoble)
c. Societies in Crisis: Extreme Representations of the Social Order, Identities, and Different Protests (Xenia Chryssochoou, Panteion University, Athens)
d. Disidentification (Inga Jasinskaja-Lahti, University of Helsinki)

Balancing the Brief Summer School with preparations for the upcoming conference was a challenging task. It was my first international, in-person conference, and the prospect of a large, potentially overwhelming event weighed on my mind. However, having connected with peers at the Brief Summer School proved invaluable. I recognized familiar faces and even had the opportunity to meet some of their supervisors, which eased my anxieties and made the impending conference experience more enjoyable.

In the Disidentification workshop, our first day was dedicated to discussing our research topics and how they connected to the theoretical framework of disidentification. Engaging discussions emerged around the practical application of disidentification theory to our individual studies and our expectations from it. Inga Jasinskaja-Lahti fostered a warm and friendly atmosphere from the outset, enabling us to explore our colleagues' work and gain insights into their respective theses. The discussions were vibrant and diverse, as each of us brought our unique perspectives. Inga's guidance helped us bridge the gap between theory and our own research, and it was enlightening to see the potential impact of disidentification on our work.

On the second day, we delved into the theory of disidentification, with Inga providing clear explanations of some of her key studies. We then broke into small groups to develop research proposals, benefiting from the collaborative spirit we had cultivated. We discussed and fine-tuned our ideas, with each conversation sparking new insights. We collaborated on research proposals, exchanging ideas and concerns with our fellow classmates. Building on the collaborative and warm atmosphere, we created a joint PowerPoint presentation to share our workshop's progress with the rest of the participants.

But what made this workshop truly special was the sense of togetherness. Inga fostered an environment where learning didn't happen in isolation. We found ourselves sharing not only our research but also our thoughts, concerns, and even a few laughs. It was a place where everyone's ideas mattered, and we all contributed to a rich tapestry of understanding. The collaborative spirit we experienced in the Disidentification workshop set the tone for the entire summer school. It's a testament to the incredible power of academic exchanges in bringing people together and fostering growth, both academically and personally.

In summary, the Brief Summer School 2023 provided a short yet intense experience, fostering collaboration, friendship, and a sense of community among participants, which carried forward to the EASP 2023 conference.

(Report written by Danna Galván Hernández, University of Granada)