Message From the Director

Founded in 1998 as the Canadian Centre for Austrian and Central European Studies, the subsequently renamed Wirth Institute is an institution with a fascinating mix of academic disciplines tied to it. These include Anthropology, Art & Design, Comparative Literature, Drama, Economics, English and Film Studies, History & Classics, International Relations, Modern Languages & Cultural Studies, Music, Peace & Post-Conflict Studies, Religious Studies, and Women’s Studies, to name only a sampling of the departments and programs in the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Arts which houses the institute. This variety allows for a diverse mix of programs. I invite all scholars and students interested in Central Europe to imagine ways the Wirth Institute can help with your ideas for conferences, publications, virtual seminars, exchanges, and more. 

We are pleased to have the ongoing support of the governments of Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia. In late August we will greet the latest class of Wirth visiting scholars, this time from Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland. These scholars will be in residence through August of next year.

Due to the generosity of Drs. Manfred and Alfred Wirth and many others, the fields of Central European, Habsburg, and Austrian studies are alive and well in Edmonton. I am honored and pleased to be able to participate in this young and dynamic institution as it grows and I look forward to working with interested colleagues from around the world. Together our interest in the societies, histories, and cultures of these lands bring us together. The Wirth Institute stands ready to assist this process in any way we can.

I invite you to stop by to see me at the Institute office, located in the Old Arts Building, or email me at


Dr. Joseph F. Patrouch,

Professor and Director