The disciplines gathered under SIEF's umbrella challenge scholars to be mobile and intellectually flexible. The round table brings together voices from different generations to discuss the impact of academic mobility on disciplinary configurations locally and internationally.
When choosing to study a particular discipline, perhaps pursuing a Ph.D. in that field and feeling encouraged to pursue an academic career, a young scholar rarely foresees the track changes that lie ahead, particularly in fields such as European Ethnology and Folkloristics. A postdoc may require an interdisciplinary focus; a first academic position may be focused on teaching students how to write papers and leave little time for research in one's actual field. Alternately, a position may be in a different country from the one a person has trained in and confront the lucky winner with a rather different disciplinary configuration and habitus. Positions may be confined to three or less years, foreshadowing a future move already when one begins, or they may contain the task of building up a particular new direction not as of yet articulated within one's original field of study. Within Europe, and within the disciplines gathered under SIEF's umbrella, the opportunities and the challenges to be mobile and intellectually flexible have arguably massively increased. The present round table seeks to bring together scholars of different generations whose biographies contain multiple moves. Do such mobile spirits have an impact on disciplinary configurations locally and/or internationally? What parameters are fruitful for an internationalized, supra-local articulation of a discipline and what stumbling blocks are there?