GHI West at the University of California, Berkeley

GHI West is the German Historical Institute’s branch office housed on the campus of the University of California, Berkeley. Acting on the recommendation of the German Council of Science and Humanities (Wissenschaftsrat), the GHI opened the office to facilitate expanded cooperation with scholars and institutions in the western U.S. and Canada. GHI West is also envisioned as a resource for German scholars in the humanities and social sciences, for whom California is an increasingly important research hub. 

GHI West will organize programs in all of the research areas the GHI supports. Moreover, it will also coordinate the development of a research network that will bring together scholars working at the intersection of migration history and the history of knowledge. The opening of the branch office is part of the strategic development initiative of the Max-Weber-Stiftung. It will also raise the profile of the GHI Washington, which, under Director Simone Lässig, has placed the history of knowledge, along with digital history, at the center of its activities. Through target cooperation with other institutions, GHI West will give new impulse to international and interdisciplinary exchange in research on migration, not least by facilitating dialogue between European and North American scholars and their colleagues in Latin America and the Asian Pacific region. A central focus for the “Migration and Knowledge” research network will be migrants as conveyors and producers of knowledge. Special attention will be given to the role of migrant children and young people as mediators or “translators” between cultures. 

Related Events

The Nexus of Migration, Youth, and Knowledge

September 27 - 30, 2018
Panel Series at the Forty-Second Annual German Studies Association Conference, Pittsburgh, PA
Conveners: Andrea Westermann (GHI West, Berkeley), Onur Erdur (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)

What is in a Category? Telling Economic Migrants & Political Refugees Apart

October 17, 2018
Lecture at the Alumni House, UC Berkeley
Speaker: David Miliband (International Rescue Committee)

Bucerius Young Scholars Forum at GHI West: “Histories of Migration: Transatlantic and Global Perspectives”

October 17 - 20, 2018
Bucerius Young Scholars Forum at GHI West (Berkeley)
Convener: Andrea Westermann (GHI West)

Entangling Pacific and Atlantic Worlds: Past and Present

March 24 - 28, 2019
Symposium at GHI West
Conveners: Sarah Beringer (GHI Washington), Wencke Meteling (Marburg University), Sören Urbansky (GHI Washington). Co-organized with the ZEIT-Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius

In Global Transit: Forced Migration of Jews and other Refugees (1940s-1960s)

May 19 - 22, 2019
Conference at GHI West and The MAGNES Collection of Jewish Art and Life at the University of California, Berkeley
Conveners: Wolf Gruner (USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research, Los Angeles), Simone Lässig (German Historical Institute Washington/GHI West, UC Berkeley), Francesco Spagnolo (The Magnes, UC Berkeley), Swen Steinberg (University of Dresden)

Histories of Migrant Knowledges in and across the Transpacific: Agencies, Scales, Translations

May 28 - June 04, 2019
Conference at UC Berkeley
Organized by The Forum Transregionale Studien, the Max Weber Stiftung, GHI West, The Maria Sibylla Merian Center for Advanced Latin American Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences (CALAS), and the Institute of European Studies, UC Berkeley
UC Berkeley Campus


Heike Friedman 

Program Coordinator - 
GHI West 

GHI West - Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington DC
Institute of European Studies
249 Moses Hall
University of California
Berkeley, CA 94720-2316
(510) 643-4558

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