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The Opening of the Academic Year 2010-2011 at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) was dominated by 'Europe'. Keynote speaker was Daniel Cohn-Bendit, chairman of the European Green Party in the European Parliament.

The Opening of the Academic Year 2010-2011 at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) was dominated by 'Europe'. Keynote speaker was Daniel Cohn-Bendit, chairman of the European Green Party in the European Parliament. He talked about how 'the European dream' has developed in recent decades. Cohn-Bendit, one of the leaders of the international student movement in the late sixties, also examined the role that universities play in the development of Europe.

'The end of Europe'

After the keynote speaker, three UvA professors from different academic disciplines spoke about 'the end of Europe':

  • Michael Kemper, professor of Eastern European Studies, questioned whether the end of Europe's expansion has been reached and analysed various aspects of European expansion and integration.
  • Deirdre Curtin, professor of European Law and director of the Amsterdam Centre for European Law and Governance, focused on the legal and administrative aspects of 'Europe'.
  • Claes de Vreese, professor of Communication Studies and director of the Amsterdam School of Communication Research, speculated on how it is that so many Dutch citizens and residents of other countries are unexcited about 'Europe'. Is the end in sight? Has the tide yet to turn?

Dutch universities in the European context

Karel van der Toorn, president of the UvA's Executive Board, closed the afternoon with a talk on the European context of Dutch higher education. In which ways do American and European universities differ from each other? How can Dutch universities live up to the high social and political expectations?

Dutch comedian Freek de Jonge performed during the interlude.

UvA and Europe

Karel van der Toorn's speech was preceded by a video, in which various UvA scholars and students talk about their relationship with Europe.