Call for Applications. International Winter School for Educators: “Nazi Forced Labour. History and Aftermath”

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The winter school will provide a forum for educators who want to exchange ideas on methods and teaching practices on the topic of Nazi forced labour and its memory in post-war Europe from a transnational perspective. The focus will be on civilian forced labour in Nazi Germany.

The winter school will also focus on how educators can use documents archived in the ITS Digital Archive, which include among others multi-million page collections of records on forced labour, post-war DPs and resettlement.


At the end of the Second World War there were approximately eight million Displaced Persons on German territory, among them a larger number of former forced labourers who came from all across Europe, trapped within the territory of the “Third Reich” and facing an uncertain future. During the war most of them suffered severe deprivation of their rights by regulations and contractual conditions were accommodated in barracks, malnourished, and held back from returning to their home countries. After the war many of them decided or were forced to go back home, returning to societies that often identified with the victors of the war and were embarrassed by a large number of “collaborators” who had been forced to work for the enemy's war industry. Quite a large number of former forced labourers did not return, but instead emigrated to a third country.

The key aspects of this winter school are: (1) to discuss contemporary challenges facing history educators in Europe, with particular emphasis on teaching the history and the aftermath of forced labour during WWII, including repatriation and emigration of former forced labourers (2) to explore the documentation of the International Tracing Service and to identify the material that offers particularly rich opportunities for new educational projects (3) to encourage the exchange of ideas for partnered projects between the winter school participants.


15 junior educators from European countries (teachers, museum workers, advanced students in Public History and other relevant disciplines).

The participants will be asked to actively participate in the discussions and share their experiences related to the seminar theme.

The language of the winter school is English.


Nazi Forced Labour Documentation Centre (part of the Foundation Topography of Terror) is located on the grounds of an almost completely intact former forced labour camp in Berlin-Schöneweide built in 1943 in an industrial district for over 2,100 people. The exhibitions, archives and educational programs focus on a forgotten victims group: about 8.4 million civilian labourers from all over Europe forced to work for the Nazi regime during the Second World War.

The International Tracing Service (ITS) in Bad Arolsen is a centre for documenting National Socialist persecution and the liberated survivors. Former victims of Nazism and their families receive information regarding their incarceration, forced labour, and if available, post-war Allied assistance. With more than 30 million documents the archives also provide the foundation for research and education. The ITS is producing its own educational material and is assisting educators in their research and development of projects.


Please send a CV and a short motivation letter (1 page) to

Tanja Vaitulevich
Email: vaitulevich [at] topographie [dot] de and
Dr. Akim Jah
Email: Akim [dot] Jah [at] its-arolsen [dot] org 

by October 15th, 2016.

The organizers will attempt to cover the costs of travel, accommodation and meals for the selected participants.