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Dr Susanne Urban new historian at ITS

Today the historian Dr Susanne Urban took up her position as Head of Research at the International Tracing Service (ITS) in Bad Arolsen. She succeeds Dr Irmtrud Wojak who had been appointed Founding Director of Munich’s NS Documentation Centre in March 2009. “This is an extremely appealing task for me”, said Urban upon taking up her office. “The documents stored at the ITS archive offer some interesting perspectives for research.”

In her most recent position, the 41-year-old worked for the Yad Vashem memorial from Germany. Her main task lied in the facilitation of educational work on the Holocaust. “I’ll be able to put the experiences gained from that work to use in my new position at ITS,” says Urban. At the International Tracing Service, the historian will be promoting research at the archive, which opened to the public in November 2007, and is to spur on specific research projects. Establishing contact and cooperation with other academic facilities and memorial sites, and upgrading the academic library are some of her new tasks, too. “And I also see another future focus of my work in the area of pedagogical work,” Urban signalised.

Additional posts in the historian’s life included the Jewish Museum in Frankfurt am Main and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Since 1995 she has also been accepting teaching assignments on the history of National Socialism and European Judaism at various universities and educational institutions. Urban can look back on numerous lectures and publications in periodicals and academic journals. A native of Frankfurt, she is a graduate of the Technical University of Darmstadt and the Goethe University of Frankfurt am Main. She completed her dissertation on the subject of counteracting anti-Semitism at the University of Potsdam in 2000.

“We’re pleased to have gained such a renowned historian for the International Tracing Service,” said ITS Director Jean-Luc Blondel. “Dr Urban is a declared expert in the field of NS persecution, which is why I am sure she will provide some significant new impulses for research endeavours at the ITS archives.”