U!REKA workshop at OsloMet

29 Oct 2019 00:00 | Communication

OsloMet (Oslo Metropolitan University) was the host of this year's U!REKA workshop, which kicked off on 7 October. The three-day workshop was the start of the process to develop an improved application for the European Universities initiative under the Erasmus+ Programme. The application deadline is set for late February 2020.

According to the European Commission, the European Universities are transnational alliances that will become the universities of the future, promoting European values and identity, and revolutionising the quality and competitiveness of European higher education*.

Participants from all of the U!REKA consortium partners participated in the workshop.


Vice-Rector of OsloMet, Nina Waaler, opened the workshop and welcomed the participants to Oslo and OsloMet. On behalf of the board of U!REKA, which met during the first day of the workshop, she referred to the board's discussion on ways to strengthen its second bid.

The department Head at DIKU (Norwegian Agency for International Cooperation and Quality Enhancement in Higher Education), Vidar Pedersen, virtually joined the workshop. He shared some advice on writing the best possible application:

– Have a strategic goal! Where do you want to be in five years? How can you contribute? Formulate concrete, comprehensible goals. Relate them to the criteria in the call from European Universities. With the first draft of the application, you have a high score and a solid foundation for working on a revised version, Pedersen stated.

Vidar Pedersen


Later on, Geleyn Meijer, the Rector of Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, presented the 2025 vision for the U!REKA consortium. Meijer emphasised the importance of researchers having the finger on the pulse of society – this is an important part of the vision.

Alistair Sambell, Senior Vice Principal & Deputy Vice Chancellor from Edinburgh Napier University, presented the different working groups and key pillars developed in the first application. "Joining six different institutions is a complex task", said Sambell.

Local U!REKA representatives Erik van den Berg, from Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, and Thomas Feige from Edinburgh Napier University presented the feedback from the European Commission on the previous application.

There is a lot of work ahead of us in the next two days! These were the last words spoken before the attendees continued the work of developing the European Universities application in different discussion groups.

Images and text by Susanne Stee


*European Commission. Education and Training. URL: https://ec.europa.eu/education/education-in-the-eu/european-education-area/european-universities-initiative_en