Course Development Competition

organised by the Curriculum Resource Center (CRC), Central European University

CALL FOR PROPOSALS  academic year: 2006-2007

visit for more information and application forms

Application deadline: 25 November 2005  (all applications should reach the CRC office by this date)

The Curriculum Resource Center (CRC) of Central European University, funded by the Higher Education Support Program of Open Society Institute, announces a call for proposals to develop new, innovative and relevant university courses.

Aims of the Program

  1. This competition is intended to encourage the introduction of new courses, which are innovative in content, methodology and teaching approach.
  2. The program funds innovative courses in order to have a measurable impact on the host department's curricula and its mode of delivery. In this way, the program seeks to further the development and dissemination of new curricula across our region
    (defined as Central and Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union and Mongolia).
  3. The CDC also aims to provide incentives and means for interdisciplinary and international co-operation amongst academics.


Application is restricted to resident citizens of Eastern- and Southeastern Europe, the Former Soviet Union and Mongolia who are teaching or intending to teach at a university in any country of this region. Citizens of new EU member countries (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania) are eligible only if they participate
in group projects with colleagues from non-EU countries (in fact such collaborative proposals are strongly encouraged) AND/OR projects are proposed in the special focus area listed at the end of this call (courses on issues related to Roma).

Previous CRC participants may apply for a CDC grant, Academic Fellowship Program fellows may only receive a CDC grant one academic year after finishing their AFP fellowship. Those who benefit presently from another alternative Soros grant should contact the CRC office to discuss their eligibility.

General Requirements

  1. Applicants are invited to develop and teach a one or two semester long course in the discipline areas listed below. The course should be clearly directed towards one of the following levels: introductory, intermediate, advanced, post-graduate.
  2. The competition is open to individuals and groups for 10 month grants. During this period, successful applicants should first prepare and then teach their proposed course.
  3. Group grants will be awarded to promote innovative, collaborative projects and priority will be given to groups of academics from at least two different countries or cities of the region who aim to design a course from an international perspective.
  4. CDC strongly prefers to fund courses that are at least partially based on applicants' original research in their field.
  5. All applicants should show how they intend to apply new teaching methodology to delivering the course.
  6. Project proposals should demonstrate the following:
    - potential to contribute to curriculum reform at host departments
    - innovative character and approach
    - potential of being incorporated into the university curriculum for longer term
    - relevance to regional or global issues
    - scientific quality in the selected field
    - feasibility
  7. All accepted applicants are required to attend two workshops: one workshop at the beginning of their grant period and another before their teaching period begins. The exact dates will be confirmed and announced later for selected applicants.

Course Development Competition Grants

Grants for both individual and group projects will consist of the following:

  1. Monthly individual stipends for the preparation and teaching period. Each CDC grantee will receive a monthly stipend, the amount of which depends on the country where the course development and teaching will be carried out. The amount of the stipend is not negotiable.
  2. An allowance for legitimate course development expenses (book purchases, reader production, teaching materials, photocopying, slides, etc.). Grantees are strongly encouraged to produce readers for their courses (collection of articles, papers, chapters, documents, etc. that represent readings and other materials for the course). The grant will not fund the production of printed textbooks or publication.
  3. An allowance for additional, justified travel costs and administrative expenses in the case of group grants.
  4. By negotiation with the CRC, an allowance for justified travel to a library outside the home city, within the region, for the development of course materials etc. The CRC will not, however, cover the costs of study or conference participation in any country.

Group stipends for the teaching period will be calculated from the amount of a full stipend in proportion to the degree of involvement of each participant (involvement should be expressed clearly as a percentage in the course plan). Group leaders will, in addition, receive a small group leader's fee for their extra responsibilities.

Please note that the CDC grant cannot fund the purchase of any equipment (computers, scanners, printers, etc.)

Selection and Evaluation of Grants

Applications will be evaluated and judged by CEU academics with sufficient knowledge of the higher education needs of the region.

All grantees are expected to submit interim and final project reports, a course syllabus, student evaluation forms and their head of department's reflections on the course.

Finished course syllabi will be edited and placed on the CDC website. The CDC will visit a selected number of grantees during the course implementation period.

How to Apply

  1. Applications must be presented in English on CRC Course Development Competition forms (photocopied forms are acceptable).
  2. For individual proposals, the application form must be accompanied by a description of the proposed course (in the form of a draft syllabus), preliminary bibliography of materials to be used in preparation and teaching, a curriculum vitae (also highlighting research activity), a letter of recommendation and a letter of endorsement from the host university. The letter of endorsement should include the host university's commitment to allowing you to teach the proposed course, and should clearly indicate the period when the course will be taught.
  3. For group proposals, the application should be submitted by the project leader. In addition to the above it should contain a list of the individuals involved in the project, their CVs, institutional affiliations, contact information and a letter from each individual stating their willingness to be involved in the project. For group projects letters of endorsement must be submitted from all the institutions that will host the course (Please feel free to duplicate the letter of endorsement form if necessary).
  4. Application forms can be obtained from local CEU representatives, the Curriculum Resource Center at Central European University or from our website,

Applications must arrive to CRC by 25 November 2005 (to the address: CRC - Central European University, 1051 Budapest, Nador u. 9, Hungary or to - please note that letters of endorsement and recommendation will be accepted by regular mail, as e-mail attachments or directly from the e-mail address of the writer of the letter. Applicants will be informed about the results in mid-December. Courses should be taught during the first and/or second semester of the 2006/2007 academic year.

Discipline Areas for the Course Development Competition 2006-2007

The CRC invites applications to the Course Development Competition in the discipline/ subject areas briefly described below.

visit for more information and application forms

Rural Development Policy

Post-socialist rural societies face particular challenges from globalization. Agriculture is increasingly unable to sustain rural communities and in the absence of viable alternatives, the result is growing poverty and out-migration.  This call is for courses that offer systematic, rigorous and creative analyses of current rural realities. The aim is to encourage proposals that deal practically with rural questions such as land fragmentation, agrarian reform, non-farm employment, and community development. Proposals may draw from anthropology, economics, and sociology. Applicants are also encouraged to address the institutional dimension of rural development policy and its relation to environmental, planning and regional development policy.

Legal Studies
Comparative Secured Transactions Law

Secured transactions law - inspired by Article 9 of the U.S. Uniform Commercial Code - is an emerging field of private/commercial law that has come to the forefront of international harmonization/reform efforts very soon after the transition towards market economy began in Central and Eastern Europe. The explanation for the sudden interest was in the realization that no market economy can strive without being at the same time also a credit economy, which - however - presupposes the existence of developed and efficiently functioning secured transactions legal regime. As a result, hardly could one point to a country in this niche of Europe where the introduction of secured transactions laws was not put on the agenda of the reformers. Driven also by the demands of virtually all internationally active financial institutions the 'movement' has reached all the Continents.

Irrespective of the intensive law-making activity, however, little, if anything, has been made on the front of education by [primarily] law schools to catch up with these developments. Thus, one could hardly find a new course designed to meet exactly these needs. One of the major problems is that without new generations of lawyers (or businessmen) educated in comparative secured transactions law the chances of an efficient turn towards market and credit economy are less the realistic.


Courses are invited on topics related to social and/or cultural anthropology, including or combining the following elements:

Environmental Sciences
Sustainable Development

Courses should address the key development problems of our time - poverty and social inequality; environmental degradation and a diminishing natural resource base; and lack of access to resources and the tools for social betterment for large segments of the population - in a holistic manner. The sectoral nature of academia typically means that courses dealing with global problems address one element while ignoring others.   Thus, courses supported will deal with at least two aspects of Sustainable Development (e.g. environment and social or social and economic), bringing together and exploring interaction between various disciplines, thus encouraging students to think beyond their disciplinary boundaries. Courses should utilize teaching staff from various faculties.

Political Science

This year we are announcing the CDC in 2 sub-categories within the discipline of Political Science. Please indicate on the application form which of these topics you are applying in.

1 Human Rights

We invite course proposals dealing with the spread of human rights norms. Issues of particular interest are:

  1. the role of the international community and international organizations in the dissemination and internalization of new liberal values;
  2. differences between states that engage in "self-sanctioning" and those that only implement changes when confronted with external pressure;
  3. differences in state-society relations; when are conditions conducive to change and who should be targeted?;
  4. how do we ensure full internalization and not merely "Potemkin" harmonization? Course proposals could rely on a combination of theory and case studies

2 Democratic Theory

We invite proposals to explore topics in democratic theory. This topic may be developed with one particular country or geographical region as its focus, or it may be more general. As well, the approach may be of a single school, such as rational choice, deliberative democracy, political philosophy, and post-structuralism, or it may offer comparative perspectives.

Gender and the State

Courses should address any aspect of the intersection of gender with state ideologies and practices. This can be broadly interpreted to encompass political practices, national ideologies/nationalism's, state policies, as well as state-like "effects" produced by non-state actors such as international organizations and transnational networks. We encourage courses that look at these effects on the lives of both women and men, and on the constructions of both femininity and masculinity. Equally desirable is attention to the ways in which states influence ideologies and practices vis-a-vis ethnicity, race, religion, class, age, and other social categories in gendered ways. Courses can be based in one academic discipline but we encourage those that combine perspectives from one or more disciplines, especially sociology, anthropology, history, political science, international relations, cultural studies, and gender/women's studies.


We invite:

  1. intermediate level courses designed to provide students with a unified framework that can be used to analyze macroeconomic issues such as growth, inflation, budget deficits, recessions, productivity, interest rates, exchange rates, trade balance, monetary and fiscal policy,
  2. courses covering fundamental issues in modern macroeconomics at the graduate level, including: consumption and savings, investment, long-term growth, short-term business fluctuations. The interplay between economic theory and data analysis is emphasized throughout.
  3. courses dealing with the theory and data of adjustment frictions in the behavior of non-representative economic agents, with the corresponding macroeconomic implications. Adjustment frictions include infrequent price adjustment by stores, infrequent employment, capital and inventory adjustment by firms and infrequent durable good adjustment by consumers,
  4. courses covering theory and data of short-term business cycles, with a primary focus on fluctuations in emerging markets,


This year we are announcing the CDC in 2 sub-categories within the discipline of History. Please indicate on the application form which of these topics you are applying in.

1. The History of Historiography in the Twentieth Century

The writing of history underwent profound changes in the last decades. Historians extended their research to new social categories and areas of inquiry, incorporated meta-theoretical and methodological borrowings from other disciplines, and questioned the main tenets of traditional approaches. In addition, the collapse of the communist system in 1989 occasioned an unprecedented opportunity for convergence and co-operation between "Western" academic research and "local" scholarship in Central and Eastern Europe. These developments make imperious a fresh examination of the evolution of the European and global historiography in the twentieth century and the introduction of new courses on historiography into university curricula in the region. Applications are invited for courses aiming to provide a systematic introduction either to the general history of the historiography in the twentieth century or to specific fields of historiography, such as social or intellectual history. In addition to their work on the curricula, successful applicants will be also integrated into research projects on post-communist historiography organized by Past, Inc., Center for Historical Studies and the academic journal East-Central Europe. L'Europe du Centre Est, Eine wissenschaftliche Zeitschrift.

2. Rethinking the History of Empires, Regions and Nations in Central and Eastern Europe

Both in Western European historiography and in the post-Communist countries, various attempts were made in the last decade at bridging the gap between national schools historical narratives. New analytical frameworks have been elaborated for approaching regional or European history from a transnational perspective, such as histoire croisée, "shared" or "entangled history" and the history of "transfers" attempting to critically re-evaluate comparative history and to shift the emphasis on multiple levels of connectedness, through interdisciplinary lenses.   Applications are invited for courses that re-conceptualize the modern history of Central and Eastern Europe by employing relational and transnational approaches, as part of a more general effort to re-write continental history from an integrated perspective. Courses should place a greater emphasis on the "shared" and "entangled" history of the peoples in these regions and assess international influences and transfers. By reconsidering the historical role of empires, regions and national frameworks, they should transcend the prevailing narrow national-based historiographic perspective and integrate Central and Eastern Europe into the major themes and trends affecting European history as a whole. In addition to their work on the curricula, successful applicants will be also integrated into the research projects on collective identities launched by Past, Inc., Center for Historical Studies and the academic journal East-Central Europe. L'Europe du Centre Est, Eine wissenschaftliche Zeitschrift.

Beside the above discipline areas, we are inviting course proposals in the following special focus area. Due to its high priority, the restriction on new EU countries does not apply to this topic.

Courses on Issues Related to Roma

With the goal to further encourage the integration of issues related to Roma into mainstream academic disciplines we welcome proposals for academic courses in all areas of humanities and social sciences dealing entirely or in a significant part with this topic.

visit for more information and application forms