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Glendon’s Willem Maas Named Director of New European Union Centre of Excellence at York


York University has been awarded a grant of $480,000 over three years, in order to establish a European Union Centre of Excellence (EUCE), according to an announcement made in the December 14, 2009 issue of Y File.

The newly appointed Director of the EUCE is Willem Maas, who holds the Jean Monnet Chair in European Integration and is Associate Professor of Political Science and Public & International Affairs at Glendon. Over the past few years, York has made a number of new European-focused faculty appointments, including Maas, across a variety of disciplines, such as law, political science, business, public administration and the humanities.

Left: Professor Willem Maas

Willem Maas will lead a dynamic group of twelve ‘core faculty’ members from across the university, including Glendon Associate Professor of Political Science and Public & International Affairs Ian Roberge. Other faculty members will also be involved in EUCE activities.

The University will receive this funding in order to integrate its existing research, teaching, outreach, and networking activities on Europe and the EU through this new Centre. The EUCE will also introduce and facilitate new activities, at York and in the wider region, promoting knowledge and understanding of the EU and the importance of the EU-Canada relationship.

“Over the next three years, the EUCE will organize eleven academic research conferences devoted to issues of applied EU and EU-Canada public policies, and an annual faculty seminar, law workshop, business lecture, and EU simulation for high school students. We also hope to expand and refine the EU studies curriculum, provide fellowships for students, and host visiting EU scholars”, says Maas.

York’s new EUCE is the fifth such Centre in Canada and was awarded by the European Commission in recognition of York's growing focus on European Union studies, and building more broadly on the university's longstanding excellence in European studies.

More about the European Union Centres of Excellence

Established in 1998 by the European Union, the network of European Union Centres of Excellence in universities provides information and education about the European Union. In Canada, the objectives of the EU Centres are to increase awareness about the political, economic and cultural importance of the EU-Canada relationship, to promote greater understanding in Canada of the European Union and its policies, and to disseminate information and publicize EU views on issues of interest within regional communities.

Article submitted by Glendon communications officer Marika Kemeny. Some of the information was gleaned from the Dec. 14, 2009 issue of Y File.

Published on January 5, 2010