Enlight consortium applies to become a European University
On February 26 the Enlight consortium submitted a joint application in the framework of the second European Universitites call. The nine partner universities in the consortium besides Uppsala are Ghent (BE), Göttingen (DE), Tartu (EE), Basque Country (ES), Bordeaux (FR), Galway (IE), Groningen (NL) and Comenius Bratislava (SK).
European Universites are expected to achieve a quantum leap in cooperation between HEIs from all regions in Europe. They should have the potential to significantly enhance mobility, develop joint education, research programmes and projects. Students, academics and external partners will collaborate in interdisciplinary groups to address important current issues.
The proposal is called Enlight – and the acronym stands for "European University Network to Promote Quality of Life, Sustainability and Global Engagement Through Higher Education Transformation". The proposal has a special focus on future cities and communities and the partner universities have identified five flagship challenges that will act as test beds for the learning and research experiences in the project.
The five challenges are:
- Health Challenges and Opportunities
- The role of AI to shape sustainable cities and communities
- Impact of Climate Change on regional ecosystems
- Energy and Circularity
- Inequalities, Socio-Spatial Polarization and Diversity
The joint work started in June 2019 and in November 2019 the rectors of the consortium signed a Letter of Intent. After the meeting with the University Board on February 20, Vice-Chancellor Eva Åkesson signed the Mission Statement.
The result from the EU Commission is expected at the end of June and if the project gets funded it will start in December 2020. Each European University who gets funded receives a total grant of 5 million Euro during three years. In Uppsala the funding will mainly be used for staff costs, travel allowances and activities within the Work Package for which we, together with University of Galway, have primary responsibility: Societal Partnership for European and Global Outreach.
In the near future the Enlight project group at Uppsala University will invite to meetings around the five flagship challenges, especially within Climate change and Inequalities, where we have been assigned a special responsibility. As a first step, there will be a survey made of which educational programmes and research areas we have in relation to the five challenges.
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