End of September, U4 gathered in Groningen to share experiences on building your campus eco-structure. U4 is a strategic partnership between the Universities of Ghent, Göttingen, Groningen, and Uppsala
On behalf of the Board of the UG Mr. Jan de Jeu welcomed the participants. A brief introduction on Campus Groningen was presented. There is a campus in the City Centre for Humanities, Law, Social Sciences; a Healthy Ageing Campus including the Academic Hospital and the Zernike Campus which is shared with the University of Applied Sciences and start-up companies. Fryslân Campus is newly created and in 2018 UG intends to open UG Campus Yantai in China.
In all campus areas there is integration between research, education and collaboration with business and society. There is one science park for the university as a whole.
There are several policy lines that UG tries to coordinate for public/private cooperation, both on regional (with Northern provinces), national (top sector policy) and European level. Since 1 July parties have agreed on a common approach in Northern Knowledge.
Some conclusions that have been drawn: the facilities on the campus have to be optimal for companies. Companies have high expectations when they plan a branch near the university.
For companies it is essential that the Campus has one face to the outside world and that facilities are clustered: for instance real estate, facilities, human capital, research, entrepreneurship and access to finance. The Campus should have clear focus themes, that are communicated in a transparent way. For UG these the three themes for societal engagement are Healthy Ageing, Sustainable Society and Energy. From a view point of business driven development the focus is on: smart data, advanced materials and multidisciplinary perspectives on global challenges.
After presentations of the U4 partners, and joyful farewell drinks, the conclusions of this Groningen meeting will be on the agenda of the U4 Rectors’ meeting on 19-20 November in Ghent.
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