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"FREE: Football Research in Enlarged Europe" Research Program Presenters

Prof. Michał Buchowski
(Adam Mickiewicz University)

Michał Buchowski is professor at the Depart-ment of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan and holds the Chair for Comparative Central European Studies at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder). He also lectured as a Visiting Professor at Rutgers University and Columbia University. His scientific interest lies in anthro-pological theories, rationality and relativism as well as in Central European postsocialist cultural and social transformations.

Prof. Buchowski has published over a hundred articles in reviewed journals and edited volumes as well as books, among which English Reluctant Capitalists, The Rational Other, Rethinking Transformation, and To Understand the Other (in Polish). He is also the co-editor of Poland Beyond Communism and The Making of the Other in Central Europe. He has served as President of the European Association of Social Anthropologists, is currently a vice-chair of the World Council of Anthropological Associations, as well as a chair or a member of a board of several Polish and European journals and research institutions (including the Scientific Advisory Board of the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Halle).

His contribution to the FREE project is essential for the definition and application of appropriate anthropological research methods, mainly focusing on his collaboration on research on ‘The Anthropology of football: fusions and fissions.’

Małgorzata Kowalska, MA
(Adam Mickiewicz University/European University Viadrina)

Gosia Kowalska studied ethnology and cultural anthropology at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland and social sciences at Lund University, Sweden. She wrote her dissertation on Czech and Slovak students living in Prague. After graduation, Gosia worked in Ireland and Poland in Public Relations, recently at the Art and Business Centre ‘Stary Browar’ in her native city of Poznan.

Within the FREE project Gosia will be postgraduate researcher at the Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology. Her objective is to complete a PhD thesis by the end of the project period.

FREE - Football Research in Enlarged Europe

Programme Info

The FREE project aims at understanding the impact of the most popular and most widely shared of all expressions of popular culture - football - on identity dynamics in an enlarged Europe. In a truly interdisciplinary perspective FREE seeks to explore an apparently non-political, but fully existing sub-cultural European public space of communication: the European football scene in the largest sense.

FREE will bring together different approaches to this European public space:

  • it will study how collective memories of popular culture have emerged during the history of European football, what trace they have left in mutual perception patterns across the continent and to what extent cultural commonality may grow out of historically grown diversity in the field of everyday culture;
  • it will carry out multi-dimensional empirical research work that is innovative both in design and scope, in order to produce new insight into the complex identity dynamics resulting from processes of Europeanisation of football and strongly increased mobility over the last two decades;
  • it will attempt to shed light on the issues raised by the growing feminisation of the game such as gender construction and attitudes toward traditional patterns of identification;
  • it will provide an in-depth analysis of changing perceptions of European approaches to football governance as a legitimacy-enhancing project and produce strategic recommendations for policy-makers and other stakeholders in this field.

Through an ambitious dissemination strategy the FREE project aims at increasing awareness among citizens, stakeholders and policy-makers about the issue of cultural diversity and commonality in the field of popular culture and its often underestimated impact on the political, economic and social dimensions of the European integration process.


FREE - Football Research in Enlarged Europe

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