Working memory is a limited capacity maintenance system responsible for processing and keeping information available in an ongoing task. Imagine, for example, that you have to remember a phone number that you just saw on a passing truck. You will use your working memory to hold on to this number until you can dial it or write it down. Even though there are already many things known about our working memory, there are also still a lot of open questions. One of these questions concerns how working memory deals with visual interference. More specifically, it remains unclear how visual interference affects an item that is being prioritized within working memory. An item that is being prioritized in working memory, is assumed to be in the focus of attention. The focus of attention is a one-item limited ‘zoom’ within working memory, and it has been found that the item that is brought into the focus of attention receives a privileged status. For example, it has been shown that the item in the focus of attention benefits from heightened accessibility, enhanced long-term memory, and increased neural activation. In the proposed project, I want to examine how visual interference affects the item in the focus of attention. This research question is part of the overall question of my PhD, that is, how we can characterize the focus of attention in working memory. To investigate this, I propose a collaboration with one of the internationally, best-known researchers on the topic of the focus of attention in working memory: Dr. Klaus Oberauer, Professor in Cognitive Psychology at the University of Zürich (https://www.psychology.uzh.ch/en/areas/nec/allgpsy/team/head/oberauer.html).
During this exchange, I will spend one month working in close collaboration with Prof. Oberauer to investigate how the item in the focus of attention in working memory is affected by visual interference. The overall goal of this extended visit will be to prepare a study that will be run at the University of Geneva (Autumn 2022). In particular, there are four subgoals; (1) further specify the research question, based on the current state of affairs in the field, (2) write up a detailed method section, (3) prepare the preregistration (https://osf.io/prereg/), (4) start programming the experiment. Next, once data collection is complete, a one-week return visit is planned (Autumn 2022) to present and discuss the findings with Prof. Oberauer. Depending on these results, we could plan a follow-up experiment or start writing a paper that reports our findings. This project will be a collaboration between Prof. Oberauer, myself, and my two PhD supervisors; Prof. Evie Vergauwe, Professor of Developmental and Cognitive Psychology at the University of Geneva (https://www.unige.ch/fapse/people/psycho/vergauwe/) and Dr. Naomi Langerock, Research and Teaching Fellow in Developmental and Cognitive Psychology at the University of Geneva (https://www.unige.ch/fapse/people/psycho/naomi-langerock/).
“Sustainability activism” on topics such as climate change, human rights and environmental protection plays a key role in national and global change making processes across the world. This Summer School addresses the changing realities, conditions and practices of sustainability activism bringing together both social science and activist perspectives.
The Summer School is new format established by the Faculty of Social Sciences and the Environmental Governance and Territorial Development Institute in collaboration with Right Livelihood Centre of the University of Zürich. The first session will be held in Geneva from June 7 to 12, 2022. The target audience includes both MA and PhD-level university students interested in sustainability activism, NGO professionals as well as a small number of places with scholarships for grassroots activists who are interested in deepening their understanding and practice (university enrollment not a requirement). The course aims to introduce participants to recent thinking around sustainability activism and civic spaces at both global and local levels. This includes case-study learning together with Right Livelihood Laureates, university lecturers from Geneva and Zürich together with actors from international Geneva. The Geneva Zurich collaborative initiative will in 2022 benefit from the participation of Dr. Vandana Shiva alongside creating conditions for active participation of UNIGE/ UZH lecturers, students and activists.
The two departments of Japanese studies in Geneva and Zurich will hold the first Japan workshop of the Swiss Asia Society on June 6-7, 2022 at the University of Geneva. The theme of the workshop is “Borders, Thresholds, Barriers.” The goal of the workshop is to strengthen the collaboration between the two locations of Japanese studies in Switzerland and to establish new networks beyond language barriers between their mid-career researchers. The workshop will bring together researchers from all fields of Japanese studies from Geneva, Zurich and Europe, especially at the earlier stages of the academic career from PhD to assistant professorship. It is multilingual and multidisciplinary, and aims at overcoming language barriers as well as the boundaries of different research fields and methods. The organization committee (Prof. Claire-Akiko Brisset, U. Geneva, Prof. David Chiavacci, U. Zurich and Prof. Raji Steineck, U. Zurich) would like to explore such differences as well as their interrelationships and thereby create new connections. As outcome of the workshop, a selection of the papers presented will be published as the next Japan number of the journal Asiatische Studien / Études Asiatiques (Swiss Asia Society, https://www.degruyter.com/journal/key/asia/html).
In October 2023, there will be the next elections to the Swiss parliament. For the future of the country it will be crucial what digital policy ideas the newly elected members of parliament will bring in. To ensure more transparency of the positions before the elections and that central aspects of digital policy and digital transformation receive more attention up front, prior to the elections all candidates from all cantons will be surveyed about their stance on various digital policy topics: What are the candidates' views on important digital policy issues? How should the digital transformation be designed and what political measures are advocated? Such issues have been by far disregarded in the past and the consequences are becoming embarrassing. Recent examples are numerous such as digital sovereignty and autonomy, digital identity, data protection, cyber security, critical infrastructures, etc.
From the responses the digital policy profiles of the candidates and parties will be analyzed and published. In addition, voters will be provided with a web application that will allow them to directly compare themselves to the candidates based on the digital policy questions. This way, voters receive an orientation on the country's most important future issues. After the election, the profiles enable a digital policy evaluation of the newly elected parliament. Moreover, the dataset will be used for scientific analyses regarding changes since the last election and the digital policy outlook for Switzerland.
The Digital Monitor 2023 builds on the experience gained in a pilot project during the last elections four years ago. However, the 2023 project will pay even more attention to the inclusion of broad circles in the design of the questionnaire. The collection and discussion of possible topics and questions will be carried out via a participatory web tool that will be open to all interested individuals and organizations. The survey design and the formulation of the questions remains with the academic partners.
This proposal is intended to ensure the collaboration and involvement of the Universities of Geneva and Zurich in the project, particularly with regard to the design of the questionnaire (bringing in our own expertise and enabling the participatory process) and embedding it within the framework of the well-known voting advice application "smartvote". The operational management of the overall project lies with Bern University of Applied Sciences (BFH), with the political support of Swiss parliament's non-partisan Group Digital Sustainability (Parldigi).
The present project seeks funding for a scientific small-group meeting of about 50 scholars on the topic of Leadership, Inclusion, and Diversity. The event invites contributions from scholars in Switzerland, from Switzerland, and Swiss alumnae and alumni who study the multiple levels (e.g., supervisor, middle manager, board, and CEO) and facets of leadership (e.g., emergence, prototypes, power, and effectiveness), with particular attention on, or implications for, disadvantaged, historically excluded, and/or underrepresented groups. Further, a small group of practitioners will be invited and discuss to present problems and challenges in the domain.
By fostering exchange between scholars working on similar topics at the Universities of Geneva and Zürich, as well as other key Swiss universities, the event aims to create collaborative ties between these institutions that last beyond the event and enhance their partnership. Accordingly, the event includes ample networking opportunities and a mix of junior and senior scholars to help relationships develop.
The event will take place at a geographically central location in Switzerland, the University of Zürich, from 1-2 June 2023, and is organized by the two PIs Prof. Clara Kulich (University of Geneva) and Prof. Lauren Howe (University of Zürich), as well as the collaborator Prof. Jamie Gloor (University of St. Gallen). The event deliberately includes scholars from underrepresented and diverse backgrounds as speakers and panelists.
The three aims of the event are :
(1) Bringing together scholars from the domains of social and organizational psychology, management, economics, and business administration in order to share, give feedback, and advance innovative scientific knowledge on leadership and diversity.
(2) Creating and strengthening academic collaborations within Switzerland, with a particular focus on supporting Early Career Researchers (ERCs) to build their academic network.
(3) Exchanging with invited practitioners, to ensure relevance of our research, while enhancing creativity and innovation in questions in disadvantaged groups and leadership that have yet to be researched.
Indeed, still today, many leadership models and theories are constrained to historical, limited, and/or outdated ideas (e.g., single, “heroic” leaders, male White prototypes, etc.). But, changes in the (implicit) images of leaders, the study of leadership in different contexts, and recent global crises (e.g., the migration crisis, COVID-19, climate change, the Ukraine war etc.) have challenged and changed modern notions of leadership, including what constitutes ideal and effective leaders. These advances accompany our increasingly nuanced understanding of how people and leaders are perceived, the gender continuum, as well as the technological advances and dynamism related to the future of work, digitalization, and new methods (e.g., social networks, Artificial Intelligence, etc.). The summit aims to shed insight on these transformations, bringing together scholars and practitioners with cutting-edge ideas that speak to how we can, in these times of change, work toward more diverse and inclusive notions of leadership in research, practice, and society.
The project is partially funded by SNF grants of PI Clara Kulich and collaborator Jamie Gloor. We seek further funding to cover the costs of the event.