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All roads lead to… Cologne!

30 May 2023

The Coimbra Group 2023 Annual Conference and General Assembly is taking place this week, hosted by the University of Cologne. More than 250 representatives of the 40 Coimbra Group member universities will get together in the beautiful city of Cologne for a full 3-day programme.

On the 31st the day starts with a meeting between the Executive Board, Coimbra Group representatives and all Working Groups Chairs and Vice Chairs. The 12 Working Groups will then hold their meeting during the day. In the afternoon there are 3 paralell sessions open to all the Coimbra Group community, on the following topics:
– “Racism at CG Universities: Historical and Current Perspectives” – a session organised between the Working Groups Equality and Diversity and Heritage
– Joint meeting between the Working Groups Research Supports Officers and Social Sciences and Humanities
– “Universities in Multilingual Europe: Experiences in CG Universities” – a topic proposed by the Education Innovation Working Group
On Thursday 1 June the public conference will focus on Europe-Africa cooperation, with keynote addresses by Prof. Dr. Hirut Woldemariam (Addis Ababa University) and Domenico Rosa (European Commission, DG International Partnerships). The Conference is open to the general public and will also be streamed via the Coimbra Group Youtube channel.

The afternoon starts with the Coimbra Group 3MT Competition where the 3 finalists (in alphabetical order) Ida Cecilie Jensen (Aarhus University), Juhi Parmar (Jena University) and Michaela Raab (Edinburgh University) will present their thesis in 3 minutes for a physical and virtual audience (livestream on CG Youtube).

After this competition, Cologne will also host the 4th CG Open Session on the European Universities Alliances, this year oriented toward a reflection on their global outreach and contribution to Europe’s global competitiveness. “Alliances becoming global actors: Opportunities and challenges” is the subject of the session, moderated by Danny Donoghue (Executive Board, Durham University) and with the participation of Vanessa Debiais-Sainton (Head of Unit, Higher Education, DG EAC, European Commission). This session will also be livestream on the Coimbra Group Youtube channel).

Later in the afternoon the Erasmus Student Network local sections will meet (in person for the first time) the CG Contact points. The goal is to improve the cooperation between CG universities and ESN local sections with a focus at this point on the European Universities Alliances and the green Erasmus. In parallel, the Closed Rectors Meeting will be discussing the “European Strategy for Universities: European Strategy for Universities: Recommendations on upcoming developments in relation to teaching excellence, academic careers, and the further roll-out of the Alliances” and “Horizon Europe & FP10: Recommendations on future priorities, European Excellence Initiative and UK/Switzerland association”.

The highlight of Friday 2 June is the Coimbra Group General Assembly. All statutory votes for the Assembly took place online already last week and the results will be announced on the occasion. This will also be the time for reporting on the academic year’s activities within the different organs of our network.

We are looking forward to meeting all the Coimbra Group community in Cologne!