Aula Mediterrània announces the winners of the best Master’s Thesis

16 May 2020 | Corporate news
slideshow image Aula Mediterrània Photo: @miquelcollmolas

A study on the international reaction to the destruction of heritage in Syria and Yemen, by Elena del Hoyo Corral, has won the main award in the Aula Mediterrània Awards for the Best Master’s Thesis.

The Awards are part of the Aula Mediterrània interuniversity program that includes an annual conference cycle and an international seminar that the IEMed co-organizes since the 2014-2015 academic year with different university master’s degrees that from different disciplines are dedicated to the study of the Mediterranean. It main objectives are promoting interdisciplinarity and research on the Mediterranean region.

With the establishment last academic year 2018-2019 of the awards for the best Final Master’s Thesis (TFM), the Aula Mediterrània program also aims to promote and give visibility to young researchers who choose to specialize in the Mediterranean region.

In this first edition, the jury of the contest has valued International reactions to the patrimonial destruction in the cases of Syria and Yemen by Elena del Hoyo Corral, student of the Master’s Degree in International Relations, Security and Development (UAB), as the best TFM . The work shows that the international perception and reaction to the intentional destruction of cultural and historical heritage is different in the case of Palmyra (Syria) or Sanaa (Yemen) and analyzes their causes. For the jury, the study “demonstrates how cultural heritage can become an instrument for the parties in conflict and a military objective with the aim of shaking the most characteristic essence of humanity together with language: identity.” The TFM excels – according to the jury – in practically all the criteria applied to evaluate the works presented to the contest: relevance and innovative character, context analysis, creativity and effort, quality of academic research and methodology.

The second prize has been taken by Lena Richter, with the TFM Swimming against the current: a comparative perspective on leaving Islam in Morocco and the Moroccan diaspora in Belgium, a comparative study between the reality of being a non-believer in a predominantly Muslim society like the Moroccan and in one where the Muslim religion is a minority like the Belgian. The jury highlights that by following a person with a Muslim education who decides to abandon religion, the study “makes a detailed analysis of the religious transformation in both secular and religious societies and provides knowledge that goes beyond the prejudices regarding the immobility of a belief, as well as explains what makes a human being disengage and remake his referents “. Richter has completed the Master’s Degree Program in Crossing the Mediterranean: towards investment and Integration – MIM (UAB / Università Ca ’Foscari di Venezia / Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier).

The third prize went to the student of the Master’s in International Relations (IBEI) Andréane Williams for her work Micro-level motivations of combatants in inter-communal conflicts. A look into the cases of Jabal Mohsen and Bab al Tabbaneh, which studies community violence between these two neighborhoods in the Lebanese city of Tripoli based on interviews with 13 former combatants. It is of special interest, according to the jury, “because of its analysis of the factors that generate conflicts between groups in the same place” and because “it constitutes an in-depth exploration of the circumstances that condition personal involvement in conflicts of this kind.”

The prizes are endowed with 500 euros (1st prize), 300 (2nd prize) and 200 euros (3rd prize).