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'Democracy' intern: Max

My name is Max Landheer and I am a 22-year-old master's student at Utrecht University. Before starting my master's in International Relations in Historical Perspectives, I studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) at the Free University. During my bachelor's and master's, I was much engaged in European integration. Specifically, I also find European enlargement, democratisation and the influence of economic interests within international politics particularly interesting topics. That is why I have very much enjoyed working as an intern over the past few months. 'Democracy' have committed to the Max van der Stoel Foundation (FMS).

I was able to delve further into the interesting political processes at play in all the countries surrounding Europe. It is precisely those countries that are rarely in the news within the Netherlands that I have written a lot of articles about in recent months. I now know all about the struggle between the ruling and opposition parties in Armenia, Georgia and Moldova, among others. If you ask me now how things stand with regard to Balkan countries joining the European Union (EU), I will also be able to tell you a lot of interesting stories. The nice thing was that there was a lot of room for me to delve into the topics that attracted me.

In addition to writing a good number of articles for the European Forum for Democracy and Solidarity, updating its website and keeping track of news in a number of countries for the weekly newsflash, I have also become familiar with the international world of social democratic cooperation. I have been at a lot of very interesting meetings with social democratic partners from inside and outside the EU. I got a really good look behind the scenes in that respect. I also felt very welcome by the FMS team from moment one, even though I spoke to my colleagues mainly online.

It was a very instructive period for me, during which I learned how to work in a (virtual) office for the first time. If you are interested in democracy in the broadest sense of the word and curious about all the countries surrounding Europe, then I highly recommend coming for an internship at the FMS as 'Democracy' intern!

Would you also like to do an internship at the FMS? Then respond to one of the vacancies here before 14 June!