The alMena Conference on German studies in the Mena region took place in Cairo from the 14th to the 16th of May 2017. Around 30 specialists in German Studies from the region followed the call for papers announced earlier this year and took the journey to Egypt to discuss the latest developments in German philology in the region together with more than 50 Germanists from Egypt. Furthermore, the conference was joined by 21 DAAD lectures from the MENA region and Kenia, who spent two more days after the conference to be part of an internal lecturer session.
The call for papers and the review procedure to select the talks turned out to be the key for 26 excellent and innovative contributions and an extremely democratic and engaged discussion culture. Unique and until now unsurpassed was the variety of the represented countries at this event. Within a minimum of time a cooperative atmosphere of specialized exchange was created within in the participants from Egypt, Algeria, Germany, Irak, Israel, Jordan, Kenia, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Tunisia.
Especially during the four panel discussions the huge willingness and motivation for further cooperation and networking of the scientists in the region became visible. Furthermore, the conscious incorporation of Nairobi, next to Amman and Cairo the third biggest location for Master studies regarding German as foreign language in Africa, brought a new range of possibilities for upcoming cooperation.
Subsequently to the conference, the meeting of the DAAD lecturers took place and was hallmarked by an intensive and collegially exchange. Next to workshops on sociolinguistics, didactics and gender sensitive teaching the program included a World Café to discuss practical experience and every-day life challenges of the lecturers.