UNIC enters a bold new phase with a "2.0" mission statement.

Authorities from ten universities from across the European continent gathered on January 27, 2023 in Zagreb to sign the new, expanded and ambitious joint mission of UNIC, now the European University of Cities in Post-Industrial Transition. This "2.0" vision offers a detailed roadmap for the alliance to deepen its commitments and values, while continuing a journey begun in 2020 after winning a grant through the European Commission's Erasmus+ call for European universities.


redéric Schoenaers, Vice-Rector for Education, was present in Zagreb to sign the official document on behalf of the University of Liege.the signing of the extension request was particularly stimulating and interesting," he commented. And above all, the project that is proposed to us will allow new openings, for our students and for our researchers. The new version of the project will integrate research directly into the consortium, and the proposed themes will allow for a much greater openness and participation of the various faculties and disciplines in the Alliance process and in our European institution

The new mission statement, which proposes a detailed roadmap of activities and initiatives through 2024, will include a wide variety of events and new offerings for students, researchers, and citizens from across Europe: increased mobility through hybrid campuses and course offerings, PhDs and other research programs, micro-credentials, seminars and roundtables, and an increased focus on the Alliance's flagship "CityLabs," which create opportunities for knowledge exchange between universities and the cities in which they are located.

For Christian Clerebaut (ULiège), former president of the UNIC student board, it is " excellent news to have this new proposal, which is accompanied by the arrival of two new universities, the University of Malmö and the University of Lodz UNIC2.0 also represents for him an opportunity to open the scope of the Alliance. " With the realization of this new agreement, we hope to be able to offer students new opportunities for their Master's degree, access to courses from other partner universities while continuing to foster connections between students to allow them to meet through the various activities that will take shape in the coming months."

Engaging in Europe's "superdiverse" future

UNIC initiatives benefit nearly 20 million citizens, students, staff and researchers in Europe's post-industrial cities. The next phase of the Alliance aims to further stimulate knowledge development and co-creation through collaboration, innovation and inclusion for societal impact and improvement. Building on the foundations established over the past three years, the "2.0" mission statement and the change in the Alliance's name underscore UNIC's renewed goals in the coming years: to unlock inter-institutional learning, teaching and research models that are deeply engaged in diverse post-industrial urban ecosystems.

" We are ten universities from ten very different regions of Europe; but connected by our history, our present and our future," said Professor Ed Brinksma, President of Erasmus University Rotterdam. " Since 2020, our unique identity has already provided a solid foundation for our joint European alliance to deepen and broaden the shaping of our cities' futures. Our impact lies in educating our students as change agents of the future. UNIC aims to establish a positive model for European cities on how to bring together learning, engaged research, and urban innovation to create societal impact and improvement, and to help with the major transitions that will define Europe's future."


" As UNIC students, we are very excited about the opportunities the new proposal holds for us," said Yağmur Kökden, UNIC student representative at Koç University in Istanbul. " We feel more empowered and are excited to shape our future. The work put into this proposal is massive, and we look forward to co-creating, innovating, and embracing the spirit of UNIC with the inspiration that the expanded mission statement provides! "

" I am very happy that our university welcomed the signing of the new mission statement "2.0"," said Professor Stjepan Lakušić, PhD, Rector of the University of Zagreb. " Participation in the UNIC alliance has opened a number of opportunities for internationalization as one of the key areas of the University's development. We look forward to deepening cooperation and developing the UNIC alliance as a true partnership of students, faculty, researchers and support staff over the many years to come."

Paving the way for the universities of the future

The joint mission statement "2.0" will serve as the basis for UNIC's proposal for its next phase, submitted at the end of the month as part of the latest round of the European Commission's European University Initiative.

The Alliance is already rolling out new programs and offerings that reflect this renewed mission: a Seed Fund for Engaged Collaborative Research Projectswas launched in December 2022, and a charter for the UNIC Center for City Futures will be announced. UNIC's innovative Hybrid Campus will lay the groundwork for cutting-edge exchanges, opening up intensive joint programs, virtual courses, and joint degrees to an even broader community of students, researchers, and citizens.

About UNIC

The European University of Cities in Post-Industrial Transition (UNIC) brings together ten universities across Europe to stimulate knowledge development and co-creation through collaboration, innovation and inclusion for societal impact and improvement.


Conulter le site UNIC de l'ULiège

Les universités membres de l'UNIC

  • Université de Deusto, Bilbao, Espagne
  • Université de la Ruhr à Bochum, Bochum, Allemagne
  • Collège universitaire de Cork, Cork, Irlande
  • Université de Koç, Istanbul, Turquie
  • Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
  • Université d'Oulu, Oulu, Finlande
  • Université Erasmus de Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Pays-Bas
  • Université de Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatie
  • Université de Lodz, Łódź, Pologne 
  • Université de Malmö, Malmö, Suède

UNIC contacts for the University of Liege

Frédéric Schoenaers

Florence Hautekeer

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