Sustainable internationalization in the times of Corona – virtual meeting of the InclusU network of the “European University for Inclusiveness”

For the first time, the Viadrina hosted a meeting of the European university network InclusU, which it had joined last year. Because of the corona situation, the meeting on 25th September was held virtually, and it had the goal of developing a working plan for the coming months.

“I am pleased that we have agreed on central issues for the near future. In the foreground are topics that also have great importance for the Viadrina: how could we use digital technologies to make internationalization more sustainable? Which experiences from the current situation during a pandemic could we make productive? These are only two of the questions that concern us in the InclusU network”, said President Julia von Blumenthal following the daylong online meeting. Further areas that the network will focus on will be a more in-depth exchange in the area of language mediation as well as the further development of approaches to teaching that actively establish the contact to the region and places concrete social challenges centre stage.

Along with the Viadrina, the InslusU network includes six other universities: the University of Lille (France), Babeș-Bolyai University (Romania), Mykolas Romeris University (Lithuania), the University of Minho (Portugal), and the University of Wrocław (Poland). The network was founded in the run-up to the European Commission’s announcement of funding for European universities. So far, InclusU has not been successful in applying for funding from the European Commission. Because the network was not able to secure funding in July 2020, Roma Tre University left the group. The current seven partners agree to continue and expand the intensive cooperative work of the past few years. Therefore, the goal of the meeting was to identify the projects that the network can continue even without funding from the EU Commission and to carry out strategic planning for funding applications in response to current calls for tenders on European and national levels.