I was given the invaluable opportunity to present a paper at the 24th IPSA World Congress of Political Science. From the 23. – 28. July, around 3000 political scientists from 99 countries came to Poznań, which replaced the previous host city Istanbul. I presented a case study investigating the possibilities to assess Poznań’s Interurban Competition in a Globalising World and was part of a Research Committee called “Comparative Studies on Local Government and Politics”. Besides my presentation, I had the opportunity to gain further insight into a number of contemporary political contexts. I also attended several panels and presentations and learned more about current developments in the field of political science. It was incredibly inspiring and motivating to meet all these scholars. I also found time to visit the city, which was especially interesting as it served as the case study for my research.
The fact that the topic of my paper was the governance of the very place that served as a host city for the congress made me a little nervous. I already imagined that several professors from the University in Poznań would attend the panel and potentially criticise my research because they know more about their own city than I do. Before I left I was also worried about my lack of experience with presenting papers and generally about the fact that I had to present in front of so many people. These fears and insecurities, however, proved to be unnecessary. I received very helpful feedback and it seemed that the audience enjoyed the presentation.
As a political science student I feel as though I am going home full of inspiration and motivation for my research. The interdisciplinary inputs and new approaches presented during the conference will be very beneficial for my personal development, my research and furthering of my academic career. I also attended several panels about my specific research are: Urban and European studies. These panels allowed me to better understand the various aspects of this research field. I also want to mention the Plenary Sessions which were held each morning and where distinguished professors commented on current political issues, such as Inequality in the 21st Century. Beyond the academic experience, the Polish Heritage Evening at the end of the third day provided an insight into Polish traditions, culture, music and local food. It was a fantastic opportunity to learn more about Poland and to talk to other participants from around the world.
I would like to thank the Principal’s Go Abroad Fund for making this incredible experience becoming true.