University Alliances – Governing Week of SEA EU Alliance in Gdansk (27.06.2023, online)

On June 27, 2023, the NEO in Ukraine joined the events within the University Alliances – “Governing Week of SEA EU Alliance in Gdansk”.

Special guests of the last session of SEA-EU Governing Week were representatives of Pomeranian local governments. Karolina Lipińska, Deputy Director of the Department of Economic Development of the Marshal’s Office of the Pomeranian Voivodeship, pointed out the important role the University of Gdańsk plays for the region in the matters of energy and digital transformation.

Next, the minutes from April’s meeting were approved, and the General Coordinator of the SEA-EU,  prof. Fidel Echevarría from the University of Cádiz, presented the previous action of the alliance since the beginning of the second phase (from February of the current year til today). He paid special attention to the new visual identity of the consortium, the SEA-EU commitment to sustainable development objectives, and the Blue Economy Observatory.

Laura Howard from the University of Cádiz talked about the EDLab initiative, which engaged not only SEA-EU partners, but also members of other European universities’ alliances, including Arqus, ENLIGHT, and EUTOPIA.. The objective of the four consortiums is further work on the joined university course, and introducing it mainly in Italy, France, Portugal, and Spain. The report on the progress within particular working packages of ReSEArch-EU was presented. Between February and June 2023, SEA-INNOVATE HUB was started as part of the project, as well as pilot actions such as Transformation Lab, or Kiel Market Place.

The next speakers were the representatives of cities and ports. SEA-EU Cities Council Coordinator Wolfgang Schmidt from the Kiel City Council summed up his group’s meeting and talked about the expectations of its members (cities of Gdańsk, Kiel, Cádiz, or Bodø). SEA-EU Port Council functioning report was presented by the council’s coordinator Luis Núñez from Port Authority Bay of Algeciras.

Prof. Catherine Meur-Ferec from the University of Western Brittany in Brest (UBO) talked about the scientists with Ph.D. titles willing to work in external companies and the problems they face. Within the SEA-EU DOC project, a special report was created which included skills that are most desired by employers among doctors, and the young scientist internships increasing their chances for employment.

The floor was also taken by the members of the SEA-EU Student Council, who presented their plans for the next four years of cooperation. Zoe Abarnou, a student from UBO, talked about her impressions of the European Student Council in Strassburg.

His perspective on the SEA-EU actions was also presented by dr Maximo Q. Mejia Jr. from the World Maritime University, the external partner of the alliance. The day of the Governing Board meeting was also his first day as the rector of the university. Prof. Fidel Echevarría and Prof. Piotr Stepnowski congratulated dr. Maximo Q. Mejia Jr. on taking office and expressed their hope for the next years of successful cooperation.

Governing Board deliberations ended with thanks to the current Rector of the University of Cádiz prof. Francisco Piniella. Prof. Piotr Stepnowski reminded the intense years of cooperation with the Spanish rector on the incredible project the SEA-EU is. He also gave prof. Piniella a fountain pen referring to his friend’s interests.

The event was attended by representatives of Ukrainian higher education institutions, SEA EU and EPICUR Alliances, NEOs in Ukraine, and the National Research Fund of Ukraine.

Svitlana SHYTIKOVA, NEO – Ukraine Coordinator,  joined the event and presented issues of cooperation and participation in the EUs Erasmus+ KA220 calls.

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