The expatriate Estonian visiting professorship has been created to invite acknowledged researchers of Estonian descent who work in academia in other countries to work at the University of Tartu for one year or one semester. The professorship aims to promote collaboration between the academic community of the University of Tartu with top researchers of Estonian descent elsewhere in the world, to increase the opportunities of students of the University of Tartu to attend the lecture courses taught by top-level international researchers, and to introduce Estonia’s national university in the world.
An expatriate Estonian visiting professor:
- participates in teaching and research at the university;
- delivers public lectures at the university;
- popularises their field of research in Estonia and at the University of Tartu;
- may by mutual agreement participate in the work of all faculties and institutions of the university;
- may participate as an expert or guest in the work of committees and councils with an advisory vote.
Visiting professor in the 2020/2021 academic year
Lecturer of history and global studies at the University of California
David Ilmar Lepasaar Beecher
David Beecher is a historian and social scientist of Estonian descent, a lecturer with nearly 20 years of teaching, supervising and curricula development experience from the universities in the United States of America and Europe.
His main research focus is the cultural and intellectual history of Europe and Russia, focusing particularly on the 19th and 20th century. Four central themes emerge in his research: languages, universities, towns and states.
His doctoral dissertation “Ivory Tower of Babel: Tartu University and the Languages of Two Empires, a Nation-State, and the Soviet Union” won the Friends of Cal History Dissertation Prize at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2015.
When the applicants to the scholarship were considered, David Beecher won the unanimous support from both students, faculties, and members of the expatriate Estonian community.
Rector of the University of Tartu Toomas Asser
Activities of the visiting professor at the University of Tartu
At the University of Tartu, David Beecher will teach two comprehensive lecture courses of interest for students of various curricula. He also plans to publish a monograph written on the basis of his doctoral dissertation, in which he emphasises the meaning of the University of Tartu – the most European university within the sphere of influence of Russia during four centuries – and deals with the development of the University of Tartu in the context of different regimes, various linguistic and cultural influences.
Autumn semester 2020
- Course “The History of Russia and Europe since 1700”
Open for master’s students of EU-Russia studies and other curricula
- Assembly hall lecture in October
Open for everybody.
- Public lectures (1–2 lectures per semester) in both Tartu and Tallinn
Open for everybody.
/to be updated/
Scholarship for expatriate Estonian visiting professor
The scholarship was created at the University of Tartu Foundation in November 2018. The scholarship is supported by the Foundation of the University of Toronto Chair of Estonian Studies, the University of Tartu Foundation in Toronto, and the Estonian Students Fund in USA.