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International Summer School "Cross-Cultural Analysis and its Applications" with Visiting Academic Dr. Olena Mykhailenko

Visiting academic Dr Olena Mykhailenko reports on her stay in Potsdam and her findings from the two-week International Summer School, initiated by Daniel Heinz from the Department of Social and Educational Sciences.

International summer school
West Ukrainian National University, Ukraine
Social and Educational Sciences Department
© Hanne Dahlmann

Video interview with Dr. Olena Mykhailenko

In the interview, Dr. Olena Mykhailenko talks about herself and about initiating the International Summer School together with Daniel Heinz.

The participants from Ukraine describe their experiences in Potsdam. What differences did they notice from their home institution? How did they feel about the teaching and cooperation at the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam? What were the students' learning effects and reactions to the international insights offered by the International Summer School?

The International Summer School was funded by the third-party project "FL2@Int'lFlex - Research-based Teaching and Learning in an International Context Project" to support the internationalisation of the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam through cooperation with international partners.

  • Two weeks of the Summer School flew by like a bright kaleidoscope. We are extremely grateful to our German colleagues for the excellent organisation, cordial support and warm hospitality!

    Dr. Olena Mykhailenko
    Visiting scholar from Ukraine/Canada
  • The West Ukrainian National University can become an important and sustainable cooperation partner of the University of Applied Sciences Potsdam through its study profile with a focus on the German language.

    The language skills of the students there and our students here can create important synergy effects with regard to international study visits and internships.

    Daniel Heinz
    Organiser of the Summer School
  • Informative, active, marvelous

    Fascinating, modern and interesting

    from Ukraine

Impressions from the International Summer School

Gastwissenschaftlerin aus der Ukraine
© Hanne Dahlmann

Summary by Dr Olena Mykhailenko

Can cultural differences influence the economic, political, educational, and social development trajectories? Do the culture of war and the culture of peace exist? Can international business projects crash because of cultural collisions? Can we measure, predict, and counteract cultural clashes? And manage cultural transformations for social progress?

Two September weeks of the International Summer School (ISS) Cross-Cultural Analysis and its Applications at FH Potsdam flew by like a bright kaleidoscope. It was designed and taught by Ukrainian socio-cultural economist Dr Olena Mykhailenko (who now lives in Canada) and German political activist and doctoral researcher Daniel Heinz. Five students from West Ukrainian National University participated in the ISS.

The program included big-data-based modelling of national and organisational cultures correlating with social, economic, and business development. The classes and individual research alternated with study visits and discussions on human rights at Saxony Anti-Discrimination Office, on culturally oriented urban planning and its transformations in Berlin with Dr. Patrick S. Föhl from the Network for Cultural Consulting, on the diversity of policy with Natalie Pawlik, the Bundestag Federal Government Commissioner for Emigrant Issues and National Minorities, on the lessons of the WW2 by attending the historical cities of East Germany.

The programme turned out to be so intense that we even held classes on the train to make the most of the time! The busier, the more curiosity, deep understanding, inspiration and learning outcomes!

We are excited about the creative, evidence-based, comparative analytical final projects on the cultures of selected countries and their people's behaviours in the economy, entrepreneurship, power distribution, governance, families, gender relations, and raising children.

Dear ISS students, thank you for creating new knowledge, communication skills, bright talents and hard work! Dear FH Potsdam, thanks a lot for the excellent organisation, cordial support and warm hospitality at the German-Ukrainian intercultural summer school!