Since the academic year 2019/2020, a new cooperation has been established between the Europa-Institut of Saarland University and Regent's University in London. The renowned private university, located in London's Regent's Park, offers its students from currently around 130 countries a wide range of courses in Business & Management, Liberal Arts & Humanities and Film & Media.
In cooperation with Professor Yossi Mekelberg (Professor of International Relations at Regent's University), a course focusing on International Relations was held in London in January 2020, exclusively designed for Europa-Institut students. Together with students from Regent's University, a Model Diplomacy NSC Simulation titled "Collapse in Venezuela" was conducted.
The participants took the role of the members of the National Security Council (NSC) and discussed the position of the USA and other stakeholders with regard to probable possible collapse of the Venezuelan state and economy and the resulting deterioration of the humanitarian situation there. In plenary and in working groups, different scenarios and options were discussed to halt the ongoing destabilization of the country and prevent a complete collapse. The aim was to ensure regional security on the South American continent and the protection of human rights in Venezuela, as well as to weigh up the risks of military intervention and the consequences of comprehensive economic sanctions.
During the preparatory phase, the participants were assisted by experts: In his presentation, Professor Yossi Mekelberg specifically addressed diplomatic negotiation strategies in addition to the basics of diplomacy. Professor Oscar Guardiola-Rivera (Professor in Law at Birkbeck University of London) went into greater depth on the specifics of the problem in the case of Venezuela and discussed the current state of the crisis and the general situation in Latin America with the students.
At the same time, a decisive event for Europe took place: the official withdrawal of England from the European Union on 31 January 2020. Professor Stephen Barber (Professor of Global Affairs at Regent's University) shed some light on the Brexit jungle. While having fish & chips with the students, he took the time to explain his assessment of the current situation in Great Britain during the kick-off meeting.
Further program highlights were certainly the visit of the panel discussion with Dr. Dhananjayan Sriskandarajah (CEO, Oxfam UK) at Chatham House, a world-renowned think tank, as well as the guided tour through the British Parliament on day 1 after the Brexit.
The cooperation between the Europa-Institut and Regent's University enables students from both institutions to broaden their knowledge, expand their networks and gain valuable and practical experience for their professional future.