EURegionsWeek - Let's develop cross-border university cooperation!

October 2022

EURegionsWeek - Let's develop cross-border university cooperation!

Review of the MOT workshop at the #EURegionsWeek.

As is the case every year, the European Week of Regions and Cities, organised by the European Committee of the Regions and the European Commission, is an opportunity to promote new ideas and publicise innovative experiences that can inspire other European local authorities.

In 2022, the MOT wanted to make the voice of territories that have developed cross-border university cooperation between institutions heard. The challenge was met, andmore than 50 participants were able to come together online for this workshop!

The first testimony was offered by the University of the Greater Region, which brings together seven higher education institutions in an area straddling four countries (Germany, France, Luxembourg and Belgium). Initiated in 2008, this cooperation provides free access to training in the partner institutions and support for cross-border mobility, all while offering 30 cross-border study programmes to fully experience the immense wealth of "everyday Europe" as well as the administrative obstacles that still need to be removed.

The Euroregion PRO EUROPA VIADRINA, on the German-Polish border, has detailed its action plan for cross-border lifelong learning. Its approach is based on three progressive stages: actions aimed at changing perceptions of the border; initiatives offering the possibility of crossing the border (study trips, internships on the other side of the border); to achieve real "cross-border interaction" (joint cultural activities, workshops on cross-border challenges, summer schools, etc.).

Finally, the Euroregion New Aquitaine Euskadi Navarra, on the French-Spanish border, has focused on a Euroregional strategy for RSE. Since university initiatives in this territory are poorly coordinated, the EGTC (Euroregion) has taken the initiative of building an overall strategy around three axes: promoting shared knowledge amongst actors; supporting the emergence of Euroregional training and research programmes; promoting and financially supporting the mobility of students and professors within the Euroregional space in a spirit of "local internationalisation".

Although these initiatives are abundant, the challenges for developing genuine "cross-border universities" remain numerous, starting with the recognition of this type of cooperation in European calls for projects!

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