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To mark the ten-year anniversary of the reunification of Germany, Kerstin Bast-Haider of the University of Göttingen in Germany, will speak on “Stopping the Brain Drain in Eastern Germany, A Case Study: Euroregion Neisse” at 4:15 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 24, in the auditorium of Kirby Hall of Civil Rights.

This lecture is free and open to the public.

Bast-Haider has studied the networking potential of social organizations in the German area of the Euroregion Neisse, the tri-country border section of Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic, in order to learn more about the possibilities for a most effective economic and cultural revitalization. She has also served as the leading administrator of the Multicultural Center in the city of Zittau, Germany, for the last two years.

“My presentation will discuss the problematic economic situation of our border area which suffers from a lack of training possibilities and apprenticeships,” says Bast-Haider. “In particular, the chances for our young people of finding satisfactory employment in the Euroregion Neisse have been greatly diminished. The unemployment rate lies between 25 and 35 percent. Therefore, they migrate en masse to the major cities, such as Dresden, Leipzig, and Berlin.”

Social work has a promising potential to create a sustainable economic and social environment for young and old residents of the region, according to Bast-Haider.

Bast-Haider has served as economist at GDR Banks; teacher of political economies at the Engineering School of Clothing, East Berlin; senior researcher at the European Centre for Education and Information, Görlitz; manager of the Multicultural Center, Zittau; and senior researcher at the University of Göttingen.

Bast-Haider received her Ph.D. in political science from the University of Bremen in Germany. She holds a master’s in economics from the University of Leningrad.

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