TERRA RECOGNITA FOUNDATION
The Terra Recognita Foundation was established in November 2005 as a Central European non-governmental foreign policy initiative. The objectives concern two main areas:
- enhancing the spirit of co-operation among countries of the region and promoting knowledge about Central Europe within Hungarian society;
- improving relations between Hungary and the neighbouring countries by dialogue with the majority societies of these countries and by disseminating information.
The membership consists mostly of young researchers and PhD candidates having degrees in history, economics and political science. Since the emergence of the Foundation our activities have been the following:
In co-operation with the initiative Reinventing Central Europe (Találjuk ki Közép-Európát), launched by Elemér Hankiss, we ran the periodical ‘Central European Review’ between 2006-2008, publishing 3-5 articles a week based on journal reviews covering Central and Eastern Europe. Our aim was to provide the Hungarian public with information which allowed a better understanding of the everyday life of the societies in question.
The project The Shattered Past (Rozštiepená minulos» – Meghasadt múlt) was launched in co-operation with the Pillar Foundation, and is supported by the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and by Central European Foundation in Slovakia (Stredoeurópska Nadácia). The project consisted of 16 short essays aiming to reflect on overlapping points of Slovak and Hungarian history. The volume was published first in 2008 together with the Farkas Kempelen Society of Komárno, Slovakia. The second edition will be published in 2010 in both Hungarian and Slovak.
The history website Múlt-kor (Past Times) (www.mult-kor.hu) also regularly publishes articles by members of the Foundation on the history of Central and Eastern Europe.
A project entitled 1989 – Revolution, Transition, System Change? was conducted with the assistance of the International Visegrad Fund within the framework of the PhD programme The History of Central and Eastern Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries of the Loránd Eötvös University of Budapest (ELTE). This project was carried out with the participation of Slovak and Czech partners. A conference and related workshops were held at ELTE offering talks on the system changes in various Central and Eastern European countries. Conference proceedings are being published in a volume in both English and Hungarian in 2010.
In 2009, with the support of German Erinnerung Verantwortung Zukunft – Geschichtswerkstatt Europa, we have published the first two volumes of the series Multicultural Cities in Central Europe. The Hidden Faces of Budapest and A Capital on the Borderland present the ways in which the multicultural tradition in Budapest and Bratislava lives on today. The volumes, available in English, employ the style of an innovative guidebook. For more information on this project check the website: www.cities-in-central-europe.com.
Supported by the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and in partnership with several Slovak organizations, the Foundation has launched the project entitled The Unknown Neighbour (Neznámy sused – Az ismeretlen szomszéd) which aims to present post-1989 Hungary to the contemporary Slovak audience. The essays cover different fields (such as foreign policy, historical studies, economics, society etc.) and are to be published in a volume. Moreover, these essays were also presented in the first half of 2010 at a series of talks in Slovakia.
’Non-governmental’ foreign policy’
The concept of ’non-governmental’ foreign policy chiefly means that alongside official diplomacy, the non-governmental sphere can also play a decisive part in foreign policy. Indeed, as regards the dialogue between nations and the dissemination of information, this form of contact may well have access to a wider range of audience than the official representative organisations. It is in this sense that we try to utilise the concept of non-governmental foreign policy. In the spirit of this motto, our Foundation has participated at several events in both Hungary and the neighbouring countries, such as conferences, round table talks and festivals.
We use the term Central Europe to denote all the countries in the region – between Germany and Russia – which experienced dictatorial or other autocratic regimes, were under the influence of foreign powers or did not exist as independent nations until the 1990’s.
Budapest 1111, Vak Bottyán u. 3. VI./4.
Seat: Budapest 1014, Úri utca 16.
Telephone: 0036 1 202 8393
0036 20 229 2624
0036 30 558 2340