Cuba, characterised by a mix of Spanish and African roots, is the largest Caribbean island whose historical and geopolitical relevance is decreased but not erased. A generation has passed since the end of the Cold War, but Havana still plays a strategic game of cooperation loyal to communism.
By the mid-1990s, Fidel Castro realised that the country needed to update its economic model to the extent that Cuba embraced tourism. Currently, the national government is still officially communist, with huge powers on the economy; however, the new President Miguel Díaz-Canel, following but not replicating Castro’s footsteps, is promoting a nation of entrepreneurship, democratic aspiration, even pro-Americanism, and encouraging privatization.
Since the inception of the Cuban Revolution, investment in free healthcare and a flourishing biotechnology sector have qualified Cuban workforce for dealing successfully with health emergencies, so that its system is increasingly exalted worldwide. After an effective and reactive medical response to the coronavirus pandemic, the economic fallout, specifically in Cuba’s already hard-hit tourism sector, is exacerbating the national scenario to levels that date back to the fall of the Soviet Union.
Since 1960, an US embargo exists and, despite periods of détente, Cuba will inevitably fall under the umbrella of the American interests and policies.
The WiP – Study Mission project will enhance the student’s knowledge and awareness of the pivotal role Cuba holds nowadays and will put the emphasis on the most controversial and thorny challenges: poverty, malnourishment, racism, fiscal deficits, international sanctions.
The stay in Havana will represent a unique opportunity to engage with the Cuban high-ranking officials. By the end of the program, participants will master the knowledge of the Caribbean and Central American dynamics while simultaneously get a comprehensive picture of the strategic relationship between the country and the two former antagonists of the Cold War, USA and Russia.
The ambition of the project is to enable participants to broaden their horizons and leave the pre-existing narrative behind. Shedding light on the Cuban history will be the ideal starting point to fully understand the contemporary issues and the future perspectives addressed to a population characterised by an evolving attitude.
Last but not least, participants will be provided with the chance to discover in practical terms how dialogue and cooperation constitute traditionally an added value for smaller countries: the ever-growing economic and commercial partnership with China and Russia will be counterbalanced by the advent of Biden as the 46th president of the United States.
The structure of the WiP – Study Mission is divided into three parts:
- a webinar course held by experts, organized in 4 lessons with special focus on current issues;
- Havana, 7 days of meetings with Institutions, diplomats, managers and opinion makers;
- Site-visits to historically important areas of the city, exploring secrets and peculiarities of the local communities, religion and culture.
For more informations, please download the brochure
What is included in the participation fee?
- Preparatory course
- Hotel stay
- All meetings listed in the itinerary
- Certification of participation
What is not included in the participation fee?
- Round-trip airfare to/from Havana
- Lunches and dinners
- City tours and museum fees
- Airport-hotel transfers
The goal of eastwest European Institute is to involve students, selected on merit, providing them with specialized training, finalized to a career in diplomacy, international affairs, advocacy and international business.
EWEI scholarship credits will be awarded on the basis of the following criteria:
- Previous participation to an EWEI or Associazione Diplomatici course;
- University grade point average of 27/30 or equivalent;
- Interview on general knowledge of International relations;
- English language at C1 level;
- Single – income family.
It will not be asked any documents to prove the indicated criteria, but we will count on the responsible statements of the candidates.
The Institute will eventually ask for certificates only randomly.
Within 48 hours from the interview, candidates who pass this phase of the application process will receive:
- confirmation of the success of their application
- indication of the moneraty value of any scholarship credit awarded
- additional instructions to complete the enrollment process.
How to Participate
To participate to the WiP – Study Mission, candidates must successfully pass a selection interview. Selection criteria will include the candidate’s motivation to participate in the program, their interest in international relations and a good level of English.
Interview results will be communicated to the applicants within 48 hours.
Candidates who successfully pass the interview will receive the Wip – Study Mission Service Contract via the email address indicated on their application form.
The student undertakes to pay the amount referred to in the contract (net of the scholarship awarded), by paying the above amount to the following bank details within 72 hours of subscription:
Wire transfers should be sent according to the following instructions:
UNICREDIT Bank S.p.A. – account number: IBAN IT 23 T 0200 8032 92000104987144
- Beneficiary: “European Diplomacy” (the operative company of the EWEI Institute)
- Transfer Funds for: “First and Last Name of the participant, Down payment WiP Havana 2021“
- Proof of Wire Transfer sent to email@example.com
Any bank charges related to the cost of the transfer are charged to the student.
It is possible (upon request) to pay in installments the cost of participation. The installment payment method for the student will take place only via Wire transfer.
Emina Zeljkovic, Belle Dorhout Mees, Laura Morales Nuez
International University of Sarajevo, University of Groningen, Leiden University | Bosnia and Herzegovina, The Netherlands, SpainStudy Mission Brussels