Winter School on Federalism and Governance 2018

The Winter School is a two-week international postgraduate programme on federalism, regionalism and multilevel governance. It explores, from an interdisciplinary and comparative perspective, how federalism can contribute to multilevel, integrated and pluralistic decision-making.

A wide range of lectures provides an opportunity for participants to broaden their knowledge of multilevel governance and government, especially from the perspectives of legal and political sciences. Top-notch scholars coming from different backgrounds and from around the globe lead courses and workshops on federalism and its challenges in the Winter School’s international learning environment.

The 2018 edition of the School will focus on federalism in the making. For one week at the University of Innsbruck and one week at Eurac Research, Bolzano/Bozen, participants will analyze the basic requirements, origins and evolution of federal states, constitution making, as well as the success and risk factors of multilevel systems. A wide range of case studies and examples of symmetric and asymmetric federations, the European Union, multinational states or current examples in Eastern Europe will be discussed. Furthermore, the study of different policy fields, such as financial relations or environmental and social policies, will provide insights into the workings of multilevel governance.

Beside numerous opportunities for discussion with leading experts on multilevel governance throughout the lectures, the interactive sessions will also offer participants the chance to share knowledge amongst themselves. Both lectures and workshops will address the issue of implementing federal systems through case studies and their comparison.

The Winter School will examine a series of issues:

  • What are basic requirements of a federation?
  • What are the factors for the success or failure of federal systems?
  • What does constitution-making look like in emerging federations?
  • What are the political, economic and legal drivers of federalism?
  • How do federal systems accommodate or facilitate asymmetries and diversity?
  • Is the European Union a federation in the making?
  • What impact does federalism have on fiscal relations, social welfare and policy fields such as land use and the environment?
  • What lessons can be learned from comparative practice?

The Winter School 2018 examines these and other questions by combining theoretical expertise and relevant case studies. As such, the programme is a unique opportunity for young academics, postgraduate students and practitioners to receive enhanced training on the theoretical and practical aspects of federalism.


The Winter School is designed for those who wish to upgrade their knowledge of federalism through an interdisciplinary and comparative approach, including:

  • young researchers and academics
  • post-docs, postgraduate and graduate students
  • civil servants from local, regional or national government
  • employees of international organisations or NGOs

Please note that the programme builds on assumed prior knowledge of federalism.


The participation fee for the Winter School on Federalism and Governance 2018 is € 300,00 (= two weeks Winter School excluding accommodation).

  • This participation fee covers: course materials, guided tours in Innsbruck and Bolzano/Bozen, bus transfer from Innsbruck to Bolzano/Bozen at the end of week 1 (Saturday, 10 February 2018), welcome coffee and welcome lunch, welcome dinner, access to the libraries and internet access at both venue sites (i.e. at the Faculty of Political Science, University of Innsbruck and at Eurac Research, Bolzano/Bozen).
  • The participation fee does NOT cover: Accommodation, meals, travel costs and other expenses not listed above

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In order to apply for the Winter School on Federalism and Governance 2018, candidates have to submit a completed application form (PDF form, see below) via email to

In the application form you will be asked to submit:

  • personal data
  • relevant academic and professional education
  • work experience (if applicable)
  • a statement of motivation (max. 250 words)
  • a short academic essay (max. 500 words) on one of the topics listed below

Details regarding the essay are explained below. Please note that without the essay the application cannot be considered!

After completing the application form, please save it and email it to
Only complete application forms (including all required personal data, motivation and abstract) will be taken into consideration. To support their application, candidates can submit a short letter or statement of recommendation (from their educational institution and/or workplace) along with the application form. No additional documents are required.

Deadline:  26 October 2017
Open to: young researchers, academics, post-docs, postgraduate, graduate students, civil servants from local, regional or national government, employees of international organisations or NGOs
Venue: 5 – 16 February 2018 at Leopold-Franzens-Universität, Innsbruck, Austria; at the Institute for Comparative Federalism, Eurac Research Bolzano/Bozen, Italy.

In order to apply, register HERE.

The official web-page.