29the of November 2023, Bratislava


The conference is bringing  together academic minds, practitioners, policy makers, students and refugees to reflect on recent humanitarian response experiences in Europe and the role of academic institutions  in supporting  children and vulnerable population.

The conference will host three thematic discussions:

Section A) International research on humanitarian work – Discussion of research findings on approaches of working with migrants, refugees, children and vulnerable population in hosting countries. Reflections from the field – Exchange of experiences on social work case management, integrated service provision, multidisciplinary approaches in humanitarian response for children and vulnerable population. Moderated by: Prof. Dr. habil Ingvill Constanze Ødegaard  

Section B) The role of universities in linking education with practice – Discussions of three-fold role of universities: Introducing practice-informed teaching for university students; Leading research reflecting current processes in the field of humanitarian work; Capacity building of existing  practitioners in refugee sensitive approaches (social workers, teachers, paraprofessionals working with refugees and migrants). Moderated by: Dr. Kathleen M. Deery, PhD.

The conference was held in Slovak and in English language, the conference was with simultaneous translation.

The international conference hold on 29I11I2023 in Bratislava was the culmination of the work of the Innovation Centre and all the Innovation Centre collaborators over the last year and was a demonstration of the connection between the academic world and the world of practice, while also highlighting the possibilities for improving education for practice in academic institutions

The output of the conference is a book of abstracts, a book of poster papers (online), a collective scientific monograph.



29. 11. 2023 (wednesday), Šoltésovej 4, 4th floor, building of the Faculty of Education

  • 08.30 - 09.00 Registration and welcoming coffee
  • 09.00 - 09.15 Opening - prof. PaedDr. Katarína Žilková, PhD., Dean of the Faculty of Education, Comenius University Bratislava; Michaela Bauer, Country Coordinator of the UNICEF Emergency Response in Slovakia
  • 09.15 - 10.25 Keynote speaker II Prof. Dr. habil Ingvill Constanze Ødegaard – Professor at Centre for Gender Research at the University of Oslo, Children affected by war in Ukraine – a white spot, blind spot or ignored spot?
  • 10.25 - 11.20 Coffee break and Student poster section
  • 11.20 - 12.50 Symposiums A and B, C
  • 12.50 - 13.30 Lunch
  • 13.30 - 14.00 Keynote speaker I Teona Aslanishvili – Director of the Migration Office of the Ministry of the Interior of the Slovak Republic Chief of Child Protection at UNICEF Refugee Response Office in Slovakia, Child Protection Emergency Response in Crisis Situations – The Case of Slovakia
  • 14,00 - 15.00 Panel discussion A – Emergency response and children affected by war, discussion moderated by: Prof. Dr. habil Ingvill Constanze Ødegaard and Dr. Kathleen M. Deery, PhD.
  • 15.00 - 15.15 Coffee break
  • 15.15 - 16.45 Panel discussion B - Linking Education with Practice, discussion moderated by: Prof. Dr. habil Ingvill Constanze Odegaard, Dr. Kathleen M. Deery, PhD., prof. PhDr. Erich Mistrík, CSc. 
  • 16.45 Closure of the conference doc. PhDr. Pavol Kopinec, PhD.


The conference is organized within the framework of the partnership between UNICEF and Comenius University Bratislava:

Supporting social work interventions with the refugee population and strengthening the overall social service workforce capacity within the refugee response in Slovakia.

The partnership is supported by the United States Government, the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration and the Swiss Government, within the framework of the Rapid Respond Fund (RRF).​