ⓘ European Geography Association
The European Geography Association, abbreviated EGEA, is a European network of geography students and young geographers, with the intention of exchanging geographical knowledge. To achieve this, the entities of EGEA organize congresses, exchanges between the entities, national weekends, excursions, and a scientific magazine is published. The main communication platform is the website.
The aims of EGEA are to offer personal development opportunities to young geographers across Europe, and enable them to fulfill their potential as young scientists. EGEA provides complementary and alternative learning opportunities, beyond formal education of geography. This is done by encouraging and enabling involvement in intercultural interaction, as well as by development of academic, scientific, cultural and professional activities intended for young geographers on terms of equality, diversity and non-discrimination. EGEA actively contributes towards the promotion of geography through its network capabilities and through strategic partnerships, with the ultimate goal to strengthen geography’s place in members’ local communities.
In 1987, students from the universities of Warsaw, Barcelona and Utrecht met with the idea to start an association to exchange their geographical knowledge between several countries in Europe. One year later, in 1988, EGEA was officially registered as a foundation with chair in Utrecht. In 1996 the first website of EGEA was launched. The homepage would become the central meeting point for all EGEA members across Europe. At the 2009 General Assembly in Heeg a change of EGEAs legal status was decided. Since then EGEA is working as an association. Until 2014 EGEA has grown from its initial three entities to a current number of 90 entities in 36 different countries.
There are several local, national, and international activities organized by the entities of EGEA. The main events of the year are the congresses. Other annual events are national weekends and summer schools. In addition, entities organize their own events. The spectrum of content of these events reaches from scientific seminars or excursions to events where the main focus lies on getting together. A high popularity among EGEAns are exchanges between entities.
2.1. Activities Congresses
Every year five congresses take place. There are four Regional Congresses in spring, organized by one or more entities in each region. However, the most important event of the association is the Annual Congress, that is held in September.
The Congresses always include workshops, excursions, trainings, and lectures with a scientific background. There are also meetings for Contact Persons of the entities and regional or international assemblies.
2.2. Activities Scientific Symposium
Each year at the Annual Congress there is also a scientific symposium, where the members are able to present their scientific work, for example diploma or PhD theses.
2.3. Activities Seminars
There are a few seminars every year, always organized by several entities. The seminars are held on a scientific level that cover different themes in the particular disciplines of geography.
2.4. Activities Summer-/Winterschools
During the semester breaks in summer and winter EGEA also gives students the chance to participate at self-organized summer- or winterschools.
2.5. Activities Weekend Activities
The national or international weekend activities are organized by an entity. In most cases there is a main theme to show particular regional or local characteristics. The programme can be scientific or have a more informal level. Some of the regional weekend activities, such as those in the Baltic states, the Slavic countries, Germany, the Benelux countries, the Iberian peninsula and the Balkans, are mainly aimed at people from that region, whereas other weekends are open to all EGEA members.
EGEA is divided into four administrative regions: the North & Baltic, the Eastern, the Western and the Euro-Mediterranean regions. Every region elects a new Regional Contact Person each year. As helping hands they have one or more Regional Assistants. Together they form the Regional Teams. The function of Regional Contact Person was introduced in 2012 to relieve EGEAs board members of coordinating the regions.
3.1. Structure North & Baltic Region
This region is located in Northern Europe around the Baltic Sea. Entities that belong there are situated in: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Russia and Sweden. The countries in this region that currently dont have active entities are Iceland and Latvia.
* = candidating entity
3.2. Structure Eastern Region
The Eastern Region is the largest geographic region in EGEA. Part of this region are the entities of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Russia except for Kaliningrad and Saint Petersburg, Slovakia and Ukraine. The countries in this region that currently dont have active entities are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Georgia and Moldova.
* = candidating entity
3.3. Structure Euro-Mediterranean Region
This region contains all entities of countries that are located around the Mediterranean Sea. There are entities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, France, Italy, Malta, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain and Turkey.
* = candidating entity
3.4. Structure Board of EGEA
The Board consists of five persons, four of whom fulfill the functions of president, vice-president, secretary and treasurer. These four board members are elected by the General Assembly out of members from the Association. A representative of the entity chosen to organize the Annual Congress was also a member of the board, but this latter position was replaced by an elected Public Relations and Event Advisor at the General Assembly of 2015. The board represents and is the executive body of the Association. The board is supported by the Secretariat Director whose seat is the office at the EGEA Headquarters in Utrecht. This position was first created in 2005 and contrived by the entity of Utrecht. In 2016 also the grant team with its coordinator was created to take care of financial grants.
)* until 2012 Annual Congress Organiser, then until 2015 Annual Congress Coordinator)** until 2016 Secreteriat Director
3.5. Structure Regional Contact Persons
The four regional contact persons maintain the contact between the entities in their respective regions and the European board.
3.6. Structure Committees
EGEA has several committees, carrying out important work to keep the association up and running. Currently the following committees are active within EGEA:
EGEA has several partnerships with organizations like EUROGEO, IAAS, ISHA, and Studyportals. Furthermore, there is a partnership to a program by the EU, "Youth in Action" as well as a partnership to a program by the Council of Europe, "European Youth Forum". There are also cooperations with ESRI, a supplier of GIS programs, and with the Utrecht University.
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