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Main outline of University of Groningen 400th anniversary programme ready

15 May – 15 June 2014
23 January 2013

In 2014 the University of Groningen will celebrate its 400th anniversary with a month of events for students and staff, urbanites and northerners, contacts and companies, national and international. The RUG-400 programme has something for everyone – parties, sports, knowledge-sharing, cultural experiences.

Participants will not be restricted to passively watching or listening, they can also join in. They can play a guest role in a theatre play, help with the masquerade parade, initiate a campaign for a good cause, take part in a relay race or walk, sing or dance in a film, or submit a question to the public academy – it’s all possible.

Theme 4∞ - For Infinity

The University of Groningen was founded four centuries ago, and wants to continue to grow and flourish for centuries to come. It wants to contribute to a sustainable, balanced world through education, research and social contributions.

Energy, healthy ageing and working on a sustainable society are important spearheads. No wonder that the choice of a celebratory theme fell on 4∞, a combination of the digit 4 and the mathematical symbol for infinity ∞. The theme is exactly what the University of Groningen wants to express – we want to work for and on the future.


The RUG-400 programme For Infinity has many aspects. Among the highlights are a musical theatre spectacular (a co-production with the Noord Nederlands Toneel), a hilarious film about student life, and a musical based on the life of Aletta Jacobs. On the interface between culture and science is the Gift for Infinity event and the Night of Arts & Science.

There will also be lectures for children, public lectures, and debates based on questions posed by children, young people and adults. There will be exhibitions in the University Museum, the Der Aa-kerk and the Groninger Museum. Twelve honorary doctorates will be awarded, and the biggest Student Ball ever will be organized. There will be a masquerade parade with a University theme, organized together with inhabitants of the city of Groningen. There will be one rowing and at least two running events. Alumni can enjoy chatting with contemporaries. And of course there will be a magnificent final party. And these are just the highlights...

Lively atmosphere

The University of Groningen wants to involve as many people as possible in its RUG-400 For Infinity programme. The University is the second-oldest surviving university in the Netherlands, and the only one in the north of the country. The city and the North have made the University what it is today, and vice versa. For 400 years the University has contributed to the development of and employment opportunities in the North. A high proportion of the inhabitants of the city of Groningen are students, some of them from abroad. That creates a lively atmosphere and that special something that makes Groningen and its surroundings so special – its unique DNA.

Municipality and province of Groningen

The University of Groningen is proud to present its RUG-400 For Infinity programme together with the municipality and province of Groningen. The programme will benefit from financial contributions from the municipality (on condition that the Municipal Council approves) and the province of Groningen.

The municipal and provincial contributions demonstrate once more how close the ties are with the University of Groningen. In addition, they support the content of the programme, created with the help of many Northern alliances to emphasize the power of the regional, national and international links.

In addition to the municipality and the province, the University is also in discussion with and in search of a wide-ranging group of businesses and grant-awarding bodies.

For more information, visit the RUG-400 website.

See also the UniFocus video magazine with an episode on 4∞.

See also: RUG-400 For Infinity programme (in Dutch)

Note for the press

For more information, please contact Els van den Berg, Lustrum Coordinator

Last modified:13 March 2020 02.16 a.m.
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