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After a first virtual meeting on 22 May 2023, the constituting session of the working group “Infrastructures” took place on 26 June 2023. Participants included Michael Bollig, Boris Braun, Clemens Greiner, Peter Dannenberg, Alexander Follmann, Debora Gerstenberger, Silke Hensel, Linus Kalvelage, Frauke Kraas, Simone Pfeiffer, Javier Revilla Diez and Katharina Schembs. Susanne Brandstätter, Anna Sobiech, Ulrike Lindner and Wolfram Nitsch are also interested in participating. The working group “Infrastructures” thus comprises the disciplines of Anthropology, Geography, History, Economics, as well as Romance Studies and Literature.

The aim of the first session was to establish the different disciplinary perspectives on “infrastructures” (with a focus on access, participation and control), gain an overview of running projects and sketch out ideas relating to the way forward. Despite the various disciplines involved, the session showed that there are already synergies in approaching the theme and the establishment of this working group can be seen as a chance to intensify existing dialogues on “infrastructures”. Planned activities include the conduction of workshops, joint publications, and joint project proposals. Concretely, a first workshop on the materiality of infrastructure has been scheduled for mid-December 2023. Here, emphasis will be placed on destruction, modification, destruction and decay. A planning session will be conducted in the near future. The workshop will surely require funds to invite 2-3 national/international colleagues (approx. 5000 Euros) and will presumably be conducted at the University of Cologne. In addition, a new title for the working group will be decided upon in the coming weeks. Javier Revilla Diez has been elected speaker of the working group and additional co-speakers will be elected in the future.