EDUC Is Growing – Universities from Spain and Norway Join European University Alliance

The European Digital UniverCity EDUC is gaining new members: The European University Alliance, which is being coordinated out of Potsdam, has been joined by the Spanish Jaume I University in Castellón de la Plana and the University of South-Eastern Norway in Kongsberg. “With these two full-range universities, EDUC gains two strong partners that are characterized by a distinct international orientation, groundbreaking digitalization efforts, and programs with regional relevance. They will perfectly complement our alliance in the years to come,” said Prof. Dr. Florian Schweigert, Vice President for International Affairs at the University of Potsdam. In total, eight universities in seven countries are now part of the alliance. This spring, they will jointly apply for the continuation of their initiative for a “European University”.

EDUC was launched in 2019 with six universities. With the University of Potsdam acting as coordinator, the universities of Cagliari (Italy), Masaryk in Brno (Czech Republic), Pécs (Hungary), as well as Paris Nanterre and Rennes 1 (France) had joined forces in the pilot phase. Their goal is intense structural and sustainable collaboration at all university levels, as well as the development of innovative and inclusive learning and mobility scenarios. Regular networking meetings at the management level and between the departments dealing with student and international affairs are therefore an important part of the project. The alliance’s flagship is its virtual campus, which already offers a wide range of interdisciplinary online courses and blended learning formats for around 15,000 students. Jaume I University in Castellón de la Plana and the University of South-Eastern Norway in Kongsberg will now expand the campus of the European Digital UniverCity to the north and the south and add their expertise.

“For students and researchers, but also for the staff of the participating universities, this opens up many new opportunities for exchange and cooperation,” affirmed Prof. Oliver Günther, Ph.D. The President of the University of Potsdam sees great potential in the alliance for the acceleration of digitalization in teaching and research so that university members will be able to study and collaborate academically across national borders in an uncomplicated manner. “When it comes to the current call for proposals from the ‘European Universities’ initiative, EDUC has positioned itself well in terms of strategy,” Günther added. “Our two new consortium partners will make a significant contribution to the ambitious continuation proposal.”

With its new call for proposals within the framework of Erasmus+, the European Commission had incentivized the expansion of existing alliances to purposefully advance the transformation processes in the European Higher Education Area. Working with the EU member states, it intends to establish 60 European Universities comprising more than 500 higher education institutions by mid-2024. So far, 41 alliances have been formed as a result of the first two pilot calls for proposals in 2019 and 2020, with the involvement of 280 higher education institutions.

Further information: https://www.uni-potsdam.de/en/educ/

Contact: Prof. Dr. Florian Schweigert, Vice President for International Affairs, EDUC Project Director
E-mail: vp-internationaluni-potsdamde
Dr. Katja Jung, EDUC Project Management
E-mail: katja.junguni-potsdamde
Dorothee Mackowiak, EDUC Project Management
E-mail: dorothee.mackowiakuni-potsdamde
 
Media information 03-03-2022 / No. 020