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Slovene Research Initiative 2024 Faculty Exchange Winners Announced

April 19, 2024

Slovene Research Initiative 2024 Faculty Exchange Winners Announced

Slovene Research Initiative

By Sophie Papp, CSEEES Academic Year 2023-24 Intern

The Slovene Research Initiative (SRI) at The Ohio State University is excited to announce the winners of the SRI Visiting Scholar Exchange Program. SRI is a collaborative program focused on faculty exchange administered by the Center for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies (CSEEES) at Ohio State, in partnership with the Society for Slovene Studies and made possible by the generous support of the Slovene Ministry of Education and Science and the Research Center at the Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts.

The CSEEES Committee for the Slovene Research Initiative has chosen Ohio State professor Richard Pratt as a visiting scholar to Ljubljana for 2024.

Dr. Pratt is an Emeritus Professor in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science at The Ohio State University, as well as New Mexico Agroecosystems Innovation Endowed Professor in the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences at New Mexico State University. His research interests include sustainable cropping systems, plant breeding and genetics, regenerative organic agriculture, and conservation and utilization of genetic resources. During his time in Slovenia, he will collaborate with researchers from the University of Ljubljana to examine the impacts of climate change on vineyard growth and wine production.

The Board of the Slovene Research Initiative in Slovenia has named Ivan Smiljanić, Miha Zobev and Jelena Sitar Cvetko as visiting scholars for the year 2024.

Ivan Smiljanić is a PhD student. He works at the Institute of Contemporary History, and his research focuses on issues of public memory, the construction of public monuments, and cultural history. During his time in Ohio, he would like to explore the public memory of American Slovenians, especially in the context of the construction of the Yugoslav Cultural Park in Cleveland as part of the Cleveland Cultural Gardens, where several statues of representatives of Yugoslav cultural history were erected, and the involvement of American Slovenians in the funding of monuments in Slovenia.

Dr. Miha Zobec works at the Slovenian Migration Institute (Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts) and at the Faculty of Humanities (University of Primorska). His research interests include the history of migration and relations between countries and diasporas. He is also the lead researcher and coordinator of the research project “Between the ‘Tenth Banovina’ and the ‘Seventh Republic’: States and Diasporas in the First and Second Yugoslavia”, the content of which is closely related to his planned research at The Ohio State University.

Jelena Sitar Cvetko is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Primorska in Slovenia. She is a professional puppeteer, puppeteer educator, and director, and her collaboration with Ohio State began when SRI Visiting Scholar Maria Ignatieva visited Slovenia in 2023 with other colleagues from the Department of Theatre, Film, and Media Arts. In addition to her work at the University of Primorska, she is also very active in the Zapik Theatre.