August news headlines

06 August 2012
Welcome to the August ebulletin with the latest news and items of interest to staff and students across the Universitas 21 network.

New U21 network management structure

At the Presidents' meeting in May held at Lund University, it was agreed to seek to appoint an Academic Director to enhance our current structure and provide academic co-ordination and leadership of the network.  This role will work closely with Presidents, in particular in relation to annual meetings, and will also work closely with the leads of our core strands of activity - Student Experience, Educational Innovation and Researcher Engagement.  A search is currently underway for someone with a track record of innovative leadership of academic activity and it is hoped that an appointment will be made before the end of the year.


Expert panel on international funding streams for researchers

Following discussions at the Research Leaders’ meeting in May, a new sub-group has been established to share knowledge and focus on international funding opportunities for U21 researchers.  This group consists of experienced staff who work in research offices at member universities and who have an in-depth knowledge of international funding streams in their region and how best to develop successful joint applications. 

The group has set itself a number of goals for the coming year and would like to take this opportunity to publicise its activity and willingness to act as a knowledge hub for any questions on regional international funding streams.  Please direct any queries to Dr Gemma Marakas ( at the U21 Secretariat who will then direct you to the relevant group members.   


Student Mobility Network out and about

University College Dublin will be hosting the forthcoming European Association for International Education (EAIE) Conference in Dublin from 11 to 14 September. The U21 Student Mobility Group will take advantage of the conference being held at a member institution and is planning to meet to continue discussions held at Tecnológico de Monterrey in May and explore opportunities to work closely together in focused working groups. UCD will bring together U21 partners for an informal meeting on Monday 10 September, before the conference begins – all U21 colleagues involved in Student Mobility are welcome.

Also spreading word about the U21 network, Sue Dengate, our new Student Experience Manager, gave a presentation aboutUniversitas 21student mobility activity at a two-day symposium hosted by the University of Queensland, alongside students who had benefited first-hand from involvement with U21 student mobility initiatives.  We’d love to hear from others who are giving presentations on U21 activity, both within their own universities and to external audiences!


New academic lead for Researcher Engagement cluster

Professor Mary Bownes, Senior Vice Principal, External Engagement at the University of Edinburgh has become the new Academic Lead for the Researcher Engagement cluster.   Professor Bownes chaired the first Researcher Engagement Steering Group teleconference in July, at which point the challenges and goals for the cluster were set down to focus the group’s activities over the coming year. 

Following the RE Steering Group’s discussion, Professor Bownes will be working work closely with Dr Gemma Marakas in the U21 Secretariat to achieve these goals, bringing to fruition new initiatives and activities to benefit (predominantly) early career academics.


FINE student events coming up

U21’s Forum for International Networking in Education (FINE), is organising two FREE events at the Australian Association for Research in Education Conference in Sydney in December.  Any Education students from U21 universities are warmly invited, to encourage an exchange of ideas and possible future collaboration.

FINE Dinner - Monday 3 December at 7pm. 

FINE Breakfast - Wednesday 5 December at 7am.

Locations will be in close proximity to AARE conference venues and further information will be sent to interested participants.  Anyone interested in attending, or simply finding out more about FINE and its activities, should contact the FINE leadership team at


Health Sciences group announce video competition winners

The U21 UNMDG Steering Committee is very pleased to announce the two winners of the U21 UNMDG Student Video Competition - the UNMDG HKU group led by Crystal Tsz Ying Lee, Faculty of Dentistry, the University of Hong Kong and Rui Wang and Shaobo Li, Shanghai Medical College, Fudan University.

Both groups will be awarded with US$750 towards travel expenses to have a representative attend and present during the UNMDG workshop on Tuesday 4 September 2012, as part of the U21 Health Sciences Annual Meeting. Congratulations to all of them!

More information can be found at or

Months ahead promise much activity!

We are looking forward to renewed activity around the network as the new academic terms and semesters begin in the coming months.  The Health Sciences group hold its annual meeting in early September in Auckland, followed a couple of weeks later by the third Digital Humanities Conference hosted by Lund University.  After the U21 Managers’ Meeting at UConn, the Teaching & Learning Network holds its conference at the National University of Singapore in November, while December brings the third Early Career Researcher workshop (this year onEcological Urban Design) and a workshop onDealing with Research Misconduct.

There’s so much going on, so keep an eye on the Events page of our website to stay up to date with what’s happening – and don’t forget to register for the events you’re interested in attending.  Details of all events are at


Latest U21 newsletter now online

The latest edition of The Newsletter has been published and is available for download at Catch up with the reports from events over the past few months, read Dr Allan Goodman’s interesting contribution to the U21 Presidential Symposium, learn how Waseda University was able to look after its international students during the devastating Japanese earthquake and meet Ignacio Sanchez, Rector of U21’s newest member.

Why not forward The Newsletter or this ebulletin to a colleague?  We’d love as many people as possible around the network to learn about what’s going on!