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Heidelberg Alumni International
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Heidelberg Alumni International


“Excellent research conditions and a pleasant environment”

Morlicchio 160x200

Prof. Dr. Elda Morlicchio, linguist and scholar of Romance and German studies at Università degli Studi di Napoli L’Orientale, Naples/Italy

Research stay at the Department of German Language and Literature and the Department of Romance Languages and Literature of Heidelberg University in 1989/90, since then regular brief research stays in Heidelberg within the framework of the Erasmus staff mobility programme for guest lecturers

Why did you decide on Heidelberg University?
Among other things, Heidelberg University is famous for its medieval German studies and modern languages and has excellent user-friendly libraries. That was an important factor when my husband decided on a research stay at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in the late 1980s and ended up staying in Heidelberg for almost three years. It gave me the opportunity to come to Heidelberg, get to know fellow scholars of German and Romance studies, take part in seminars and other events and do research on my own projects.

What were your experiences in Heidelberg?
I found excellent research conditions and a pleasant environment in Heidelberg. As a university town, Heidelberg goes to great lengths to cater to students‘needs – probably for economic reasons among others, as the university is an important financial asset – which I find very positive. I still keep in touch with some of the colleagues I met back then.

How did your career continue after your stay in Heidelberg?
In 1992 I was appointed Professoressa associata for medieval German studies at Federico II University in Naples and in 2004 I became Professore ordinario at L’Orientale University in Naples. 

Do you recommend a research stay at Heidelberg University to your students or fellow researchers?
The roads between Naples and Heidelberg are certainly well travelled – by Erasmus students, doctoral candidates, junior scientists, researchers, lecturers. Some catch the Heidelberg bug and use any chance to extend their stay or return to Heidelberg. Some even manage to stay for good: A former Erasmus student from Federico II university in Naples now works as a research assistant (Akademische Rätin) in the Department of Romance Languages and Literature. But a research stay in Heidelberg is also a good idea for anyone interested in Italian studies: Doctoral students from Italy wrote papers on Southern Italian dialects and contemporary Italian under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Edgar Radtke of Heidelberg University’s Department of Romance Languages and Literature. I want to stress this point, because while it stands to reason that Italian students of German would want to come to Heidelberg, it is a much less known fact that Heidelberg is also an interesting destination for students and scholars of the Italian language and literature!

What do you think of the opportunities offered by the Research-Alumni Network?
First and foremost, the Research-Alumni Network lets me stay in touch with academic life in Heidelberg, even if I can’t manage to come here every year. The network also makes it easier to contact other researchers and Heidelberg alumni to exchange experiences and develop new projects.

Email: Editor
Latest Revision: 2013-05-06
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