2015 AESOP PHD WORKSHOP: Stara Lesna, Slovakia


The workshop was jointly organised by SPECTRA Centre of Excellence of the EU and Institute of Management of Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava, AESOP and AESOP Young Academics and it was held from Monday 6th to Saturday 11th July 2015.
37 PhD students of different universities from all over the world participated in the AESOP PhD workshop 2015 held in Stara Lesna, in the Tatra Mountains, in Slovakia.

The 37 participants were selected from a competitive pool of applications, and represented a number of EU countries. The traditional mission of the workshop focuses on enabling PhD students to share their research ideas with senior and other young scholars in order to establish a mutual learning environment, allowing the participants to give and receive comments on their research questions, goals, and methods. The mentors guiding the 2015 workshop included: Prof. Susan Baker (University of Cardiff), Prof. Benjamin Davy (TU Dortmund University), Prof. Izabela Mironowicz (Wroclaw University of Technology), Prof. Paulo Silva (University of Aveiro), Prof. Jirina Jilkova (University of J.E. Purkyne, Usti nad Labem), Prof. Maros Finka (Slovak University of Technology), Prof. Tatiana Kluvankova (Centre for Transdisicplinary Studies of Institutions, Evolution and Policies. Slovakia), as well as invited speakers including: Prof. Evelyn Gustedt (Academy of Spatial Research and Planning), Prof. Michal V.Marek (Centre of Excellence for the Global Change Research, Czech Republic),dr. Eva Streberova (Joint Research Centre of excellence SPECTRA of Slovak University of Technology and the Institute of Forest Ecology of Slovak Academy of Sciences).


The workshop was composed of intensive study modules in small groups with plenary sessions and presentations from the mentors. The topic of the workshop is corresponding with the topic of the Annual AESOP Congress 2015 “Fuzzy Responsibility - Multi-actors Decision Making under Uncertainty and Global Changes”, in particular focused on:

  • Spatio-structural, temporal, functional and conceptual dimensions of softness and fuzziness in spatial development
  • Growing uncertainty in decision making
  • Multi actors decision making
  • Governance as a cultural phenomenon (diverse)
  • Perspective for fuzzy soft polycentric governance for soft and fuzzy spaces.


An important mention should be made about the chosen venue: High Tatra Mountains provided a beautiful environment, where the participants could enjoy a hiking trip and natural surroundings. The 6 days length of the workshop allowed the participants to bond spending time together.


Our sincerest thanks go to all of those committee members, mentors and students who made the workshop such a success.