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German politics is topic of upcoming panel

Sept. 15, 2009

KALAMAZOO--The changing political landscape in Germany as that country holds elections later this month is the topic of the first event of the new academic year for Western Michigan University's Institute of Government and Politics.

A discussion of domestic and international pressures facing the country heading into its elections late this month will be held at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16, in Room 3301 of WMU's Friedmann Hall. Speakers include Dr. Gunther Hega, WMU associate professor of political science and scholar of comparative public policy; Dr. Mark K. Cassell, associate professor of political science at Kent State University who recently returned from a Fulbright visit in Germany; and Dr. Daniel Goler, associate professor of European Studies at the University of Passau, Germany, who is a visiting professor at WMU.

The discussion, "German Political Landscape in 2009: A Moment for Change," will focus on the influences that are forcing Germans to reconsider such post-war policies as tight monetary policy, the social market economy as it appears to be weakening under the weight of demographic and economic changes, and a political party system centered on people's parties that appear less relevant as clientele politics and political cynicism increase.

For more information, contact Susan Hofmann, director of WMU's Institute of Government and Politics, at susan.hoffmann@wmich.edu or (269) 387-5692.

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Media contact: Deanne Puca, (269) 387-8400, deanne.puca@wmich.edu

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