HERA or how Europe uses its past: three projects with Swiss participation

Researchers from Switzerland are among the most successful applicants to the research programme "Uses of the Past" of the Era-Net HERA.

Identity, integration, political legitimacy and cultural dynamics across Europe - these are some of the key topics addressed in the joint research programme "Uses of the Past" (JRP UP) of the Era-Net HERA (Humanities in the European Research Area). The aim is to better understand how European societies reflect on and use their past.

High success rate of researchers from Switzerland

Twenty-four European research funding organisations from 23 countries are participating in the Era-Net HERA. Aiming to help internationalise the humanities, the SNSF is taking part in a HERA programme for the first time. Hence the high success rates achieved by researchers from Switzerland are all the more encouraging. Switzerland ranks among the most successful countries in terms of the number of principal investigators.

From financial crises to epidemics

HERA will support three projects involving researchers based in Switzerland. Among them are Mary O'Sullivan (University of Geneva), Martin Dusinberre (University of Zurich) and Martin Lengwiler (University of Basel). They will address the following themes and questions in collaborative projects with researchers across Europe, from Spain to Sweden:

  • Project "Uses of the Past in International Economic Relations"To what extent do policy-makers and market actors use insights gained from global financial crises in the past as a foundation for their decisions? (O’Sullivan)
  • Project "East Asian Uses of the European Past: Tracing Braided Chronotypes"How is the past constructed in a global context based on emblematic historical moments such as the fall of the Roman Empire, the enlightenment or the Holocaust? (Dusinberre)
  • Project "Disentangling European HIV/AIDS Policies: Activism, Citizenship and Health"What strategies have been pursued in dealing with AIDS and how do these experiences inform the debate on health policy-making and citizenship? (Lengwiler)

HERA supports 18 consortia across Europe

A total of 605 transnational research consortia submitted an outline proposal for the call. Of these, 100 were invited to send a full proposal by an independent panel of international experts. With the evaluation now complete, the HERA network and the European Commission are awarding grants worth 21 million euros in total to 18 consortia for a three-year period (2016-2019). The SNSF and the State Secretariat for Education and Research (SERI) will contribute 818,000 euros to the Swiss-based projects.