20th Anniversary Documents

On the occasion of CEU's 20th Anniversary, all of the University’s academic departments have been asked to survey the most important intellectual developments of the past 20 years in their respective fields; assess the most significant contributions by the members of the faculty to their disciplines; and identify the emerging new academic challenges of their subject areas.

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CEU Business School

CEU Business School—Historical Overview*


CEU Business School, which became affiliated with CEU only ten years ago, has a longer history than CEU itself. Established principally by George Soros, it admitted its first cohort in 1989, two years before CEU started to offer classes.

In 1987 two professors at Indiana University in Bloomington learned that Mr.

CEU Summer University (SUN)

SUN and CEU – Converging and Diverging paths 

Since its inception in 1996, the CEU Summer University (SUN) has shared and contributed to the university’s mission in its own special way. In a compressed form, through short, intensive postgraduate courses, its mandate has been to promote inspiring research and teaching as well as social engagement amongst its target audience of graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, junior faculty, researchers and professionals.

Center for Academic Writing

Genre Approaches to Teaching

Genre approaches to teaching writing, which developed most significantly in the early 1990s with the works of Swales and Johns, moved away from the process approach to writing to focus on a social-constructionist view of writing as a discourse shaped by the members of a given discourse community. There are preferred genres within each discipline, the conventions of which are familiar to members of the discipline.

Department of Economics

The most interesting developments of the last 20 years

Economics is a very vast field of analysis, encompassing almost all human activities.

Department of Environmental Sciences and Policy

The most interesting developments of the last 20 years

It would not be an exaggeration to say that environmental science as we now know the discipline emerged during the last two decades or so, since CEU was first established.

Department of Gender Studies

The most interesting developments in the last 20 years in gender studies

Within the last 20 years, women’s studies/gender studies as an academic discipline, particularly in the region of Central and Eastern Europe, has undergone a period of intensive growth. While in most North American universities and in a number of West European countries, women’s studies/gender studies were introduced in academia in the 1970s and the 1980s, in Central and Eastern Europe, this generally happened in the 1990s.

Department of History

During the last two decades, the writing of history has suffered numerous changes. Historians have extended their research to new social categories and areas of inquiry, have incorporated meta-theoretical and methodological borrowings from other disciplines, and have questioned the main tenets of "traditional" approaches.

Department of International Relations and European Studies (IRES)

Developments in and Contributions by CEU faculty to International Relations over the Last 20 Years

As with many departments of International Relations (IR), the disciplines represented by IRES department faculty at CEU are varied and include International Relations Theory, International Law, Comparative Politics, International Political Economy, Security Studies and Area Studies. These numerous offerings make for a pluralistic and diverse intellectual environment, where cross-disciplinary discussions are inherent to the life of the department.

Jewish Studies Project

Most interesting developments of the last 20 years in Jewish studies

The Jewish Studies Project at CEU was launched in 1996, with the aim of revitalizing the study of Jewish history, culture and society in the region. Starting out as a public lecture series, the Jewish Studies Project now offers a teaching track for MA and PhD students, regularly organizes international conferences and workshops, and most importantly, has become a mainstay of Jewish studies in Central Europe.

Department of Legal Studies

The fall of the Berlin Wall– and the wave of new constitutions

The 20 years since the CEU was established coincide with the period after the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the superseding of the East-West divide. Throughout this period most consequential tasks and opportunities have emerged within the realm of law. We have witnessed a critically important shift, and new constitutions became a hallmark of this shift.