Call for Applications, 2019 Winter School on Federalism and Governance

Deadline:  21 October 2018, 23:59 CEST
Open to: young researchers and academics, post-docs and post-graduate students, civil servants from a local, regional or national government as well as employees of international organizations or NGOs
Venue: 4 – 15 February 2019, for one week in Innsbruck (Austria) and one week in Bolzano/Bozen (Italy)


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 2019 edition of the School will focus on federalism and the rule of law. The call for applications will go out in September 2018.


The Winter School is designed for those who wish to upgrade their knowledge of federalism and regionalism 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 2019 is € 300,00 (= two weeks Winter School excluding accommodation).

  • The 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, 9 February 2019), 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

Participants can book their accommodation in Innsbruck and Bolzano independently or through the organizers. If the latter is chosen, two options are available (see single and twin room options below). Rooms will be booked in standard guesthouses and in quietly located areas of town, both in Innsbruck and in Bolzano/Bozen.

  • Option 1: € 840,00 – includes 13 nights-accommodation in a single room with breakfast (= 1.140,00 Euro including participation fee of 300,00 Euro)
  • Option 2: € 640,00 – includes 13 nights-accommodation in a twin room with breakfast (= 940,00 Euro including participation fee of 300,00 Euro)
  • Option 3: € 0,00 – no accommodation booked through the organizers, participants organize accommodation in Innsbruck and Bolzano/Bozen by themselves (= 300,00 Europarticipation fee only)

​Both single and twin room accommodations are available on a first-come-first-serve basis upon enrollment. The participation fee (without and with accommodation) has to be paid upon enrollment in December 2018.

The organizers of the Winter School will award a limited number of scholarships. The organizers distinguish between:

  • “full scholarships” covering the accommodation costs in a 3 -bed room for 13 nights plus breakfast in Innsbruck and Bolzano/Bozen and a small contribution towards the participants’ travel expenses (refund after the Winter School). 1-2 scholarships are available.
  • “partial scholarships” covering the accommodation costs in a 3-bed room in Innsbruck and Bolzano/Bozen for 13 nights plus breakfast. Up to 5 scholarships are available.

Scholarships are limited and will be awarded based on merit and need; preference will be given to students and applicants from non-European countries.

Please note that holders of these scholarships are still required to pay a participation fee of € 150,00 upon enrollment. The scholarships will be awarded after all applications have been processed by the end of November 2018.


In order to apply for the Winter School on Federalism and Governance, candidates have to submit a completed application form (PDF format, available below) via email to Please read the following information carefully.

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!

In case of further questions or doubts, please contact

Please apply by using this application form

Please download the form, save your changes and send it via email to

Deadline for applications: SUNDAY, 21 OCTOBER 2018, 23:59 CEST

Only complete application forms (including all required personal data, statement of motivation and abstract) will be taken into consideration. Please send only the application form, no additional documents are required.

In case of further questions or doubts, please contact

As part of your application we ask you to write a short essay of max. 500 words answering ONE of the questions below. For half a day during the Winter School, workshops will be held on four topics that are selected by the scientific committee. Among others, past editions have dealt with: Social Welfare and Integration, Fiscal Relations, Local Government, Environment, Education, Political Parties, Asymmetries

The workshop topics of the Winter School 2019 are:

A) Financial Relations
B) Environment
C) Ethnic, Linguistic and Religious Minorities
D) Secession Referendums

Please answer ONE of the following questions in the academic essay for the application:

Group A – Financial Relations

  1. Are there any legal and/or political instruments of conflict prevention and resolution in intergovernmental financial relations? Please focus on a case study with which you are familiar and provide examples.
  2.  Is there a gap between the Black Letter Law of a financial constitution and the functioning of a federal system? What role do the Courts play in this respect? Please focus on a case study with which you are familiar and provide examples.

Group B – Environment

  1. Do any forms of public involvement contribute to the formulation of environmental policy and legislation at different territorial levels? Please provide some national cases as examples
  2. Is public participation in decision-making perceived as a potential conflict or as a cooperative mechanism? Please provide some national cases as examples.

Group C – Ethnic, Linguistic and Religious Minorities

  1. What are the advantages and shortcomings of territorial autonomy as an instrument for accommodation of ethnic, linguistic and religious diversity? Please focus on one or two case studies with which you are familiar.
  2. How are federal systems managing religious diversity? How does the interplay between state and sub-state legal norms and policies impact on religious minorities? Please focus on one or two case studies with which you are familiar.

Group D – Secession Referendums: Between Politics and (the Rule of) Law

  1. Is it justifiable for constitutional texts or constitutional courts to introduce legal norms on how to initiate and carry out a secession referendum? What are the arguments in favor and against such a legalization of the process towards secession?
  2. To what extent do legal norms on how to initiate and carry out a secession referendum impact on its outcome? Please refer to one or more cases of votes on independence.

Applications which are successfully submitted and valid will receive a confirmation via e-mail within 5 working days after submission.

Due to the volume of applications, only short-listed applicants will be contacted by 5 December 2018. The enrollment procedure (including payment of the tuition fee) has to be completed within 7 working days after notification of the invitation to participate.

Any further questions may be directed to the organizers at or +39-0471-055239.

The official web-page.