Ukraine changes everything

“Ukraine changes everything”: What has the civil society response to Russia’s war against Ukraine taught us about NGOs and humanitarianism?

This workshop is on Wednesday, 31 May 2023 from 14:00 pm to 18:30 pm at Sala Okrągłego Stołu, Staszic Palace (Nowy Świat 72, Warsaw) and will include invited members of Poland’s civil society, the NGO sector, researchers, as well as individual, local and international actors involved in humanitarian relief for the Ukrainian people or providing support for the Ukrainian military. Co-sponsored by the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology at the Polish Academy of Sciences, the U.S. Fulbright Commission, the Faculty of Political Science and Journalism at the Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, and Grupa Zagranica, this event will: 1. take stock of the activities in Poland related to accommodating refugees, particularly local actors; 2. present and discuss in a multi-stakeholder setting ongoing research to analyse these events; and 3. provide a networking and information sharing opportunity for scholars and practitioners from the NGO sector.

 Participation is free of charge; however, registration is required (Chrome browser recommended):


14:00-14:10: Welcome and opening remarks by organizers

14:10-15:40: Session 1: The academic perspective
Chair: Dr Iryna Pawłowska (Catholic University of Lublin)

  • Dr. Patrice McMahon (Senior Fulbright Scholar, University of Nebraska-Lincoln), Dr hab. Galia Chimiak (IFiS PAN), “I thought that Polish NGOs are like African ones”: the Polish humanitarian response to the war in Ukraine
  • Dr Paweł Kuczyński (Collegium Civitas): Non-governmental organizations and civic initiatives as hubs of the network movement to help war refugees from Ukraine
  • Dr hab. Bartosz Hordecki (UAM): Emotional shift? Polish-Ukrainian attitudes in school communities of Wielkopolska

15:40-16:00: Coffee break

16:00-17:30: Session 2: Civil society roundtable (in English and Polish) Chair: Dr. Patrice McMahon (Senior Fulbright Scholar)

  • Grzegorz Gruca (Polish Humanitarian Action)
  • Sławomir Sierakowski (Krytyka Polityczna)
  • Dr. Benjamin Cope (Fundacja Nasz wybór)
  • Dr. Sławomir Nałęcz (Sławomir Nałęcz MEAL)
  • Anna Kołasińska (informal initiative)

17:30-18:30: Reception and Networking

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