Asta Pundzienė Elected Vice-President of ECIU

2017-04-10 12:00

Asta Pundzienė, Vice-Rector for Research and Innovations at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) was elected as a Vice-President of the European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU). University of Twente Executive Board President Victor van der Chijs has been appointed the President of the ECIU, and José Mendes (Vice-Rector for Research of University of Aveiro, Portugal) has been appointed as a treasurer.

KTU Santaka Valley, the research and innovation hub

The election procedure took place during the ECIU Board meeting in Monterey, Mexico last week. Mr van der Chijs succeeds Lluís Tort (Autonomous University of Barcelona), taking on the task of moulding the Consortium’s further development. This will involve greater emphasis on the public profile of educational innovation, on the link between research and business, and on further strengthening cooperation in entrepreneurship.

In his new role, Mr van der Chijs is pushing for a central role for entrepreneurship and for still greater commitment from ECIU members.

“The ECIU has great potential and we are currently working hard to execute our strategic agenda. We are formulating new aspirations for this twentieth anniversary of the ECIU. Our common goal is to enhance knowledge sharing between scientists, and to make more research funding available by tapping into grant programmes in Europe and elsewhere. We also want to actively engage in the debate surrounding the new European framework programme for research and innovation. Finally, we are launching the ECIU Start-up Discovery Journey, a new European programme of excellence for entrepreneurial students and PhD students”, says Mr van der Chijs.

Victor van der Chijs has been Vice President of the ECIU since spring of 2016. In that role, he has been actively shaping the future of the Consortium. The foundation for the organization’s future plans was laid in Amsterdam, in the summer of 2016. As a result, the ECIU will soon be opening an office in Brussels, enabling it to exert greater influence on EU policy. The University of Nottingham (UK) and Tampere University of Technology (Finland) have also joined the Consortium recently.

Victor van der Chijs, Asta Pundzienė and José Mendes will form the Presidium of the ECIU Executive Board for the next three years.

About ECIU

ECIU, founded in 1997, is a Consortium of universities set up to share information and knowledge about good practices and the challenges that each member faces with regard to university governance and cooperation with society. In seeks especially to share values and harmonize positions so that it can present itself to European instances and other universities and university networks as an entity capable of accompanying and influencing the European agenda in the field of higher education cooperation policy and regional research and development.

KTU is a member of the Consortium since January 2016. It is the only Lithuanian university among the ECIU members.

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