01 Oct 2022

TUS sees positive impact of RUN-EU  collaboration

Programme: European Erasmus+ brings together like minds

TUS sees positive impact of RUN-EU  collaboration

The Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest (TUS) is a founding member of the European Universities Initiative Erasmus+ funded Regional University Network (RUN-EU) alliance which bring together seven like-minded, regionally focused Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). 

This includes Politécnico de Leiria, Portugal; Häme University of Applied Sciences, Finland; Polytechnic of Cávado  and Ave, Portugal; NHL-Stenden University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands; Széchenyi István University, Hungary; Vorarlberg University of Applied Sciences, Austria. 

RUN-EU comprises more than 76,000 students, 8000 staff, 53 faculties, 97 research centres and groups and more than 30 associated partners including Regional, National, and international authorities. TUS along with the three local authorities in the Mid West signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will pave the way for the formation of the European Zone for Inter-Regional Development (EZ-ID), allowing higher education institutes to work with regional governments in driving innovation in their regions across Europe. 

To have a real positive impact on society, RUN-EU has partnered with associates ranging from regional and national authorities, chambers of commerce, higher education institutions, research centres, international policy units, non-governmental organisations and businesses. 

They compose the Associated Partner Advisory Board, which advises RUN-EU on societal engagement affairs and the most urgent and emerging challenges of our regions. The Limerick and Midwest Associate Partners involved include: Limerick City and County Council, Clare County Council, Tipperary County Council,  Explore Engineering, Innovate Limerick, Irish Bioeconomy Foundation, CONFIRM, Limerick Chamber of Commerce, IDA and Fáilte Ireland. 

The RUN-EU long term vision places innovative teaching, learning, research, and engagement at the centre of the alliance activities and plots a course to implement the shared, integrated, and long-term joint strategy of the European Universities. By 2030, RUN-EU will be a fully engaged European University, that has developed a unique new type of multinational interregional alliance, a European Zone for Interregional Development. 

RUN-EU is a new generation of creative Europeans whereby, ‘learning, studying and doing research’ enables our students to cooperate across borders, languages, and disciplines, and thus develop a strong European identity. RUN-EU will deliver on the core objectives of the European Research Area by: 

  • Inter-University Future and Advanced Skills Academies and Collaborative European Degrees designed and delivered through challenge and work-based programmes to meet future student needs as well as life-long learning and upskilling/reskilling requirements 
  • Inter-University European Mobility Innovation Centre building and sharing expertise in designing quality monitored innovative international student and staff mobility activities 
  • Interregional European Research and Innovation Hubs and Innovation Discovery Program fostering joint RDI activities with industry and regional stakeholders focused on: Future Industry Sustainable Regional Development, the Bio-economy and Social Innovation to create a single borderless market for research, innovation, and technology across the EU 

President of TUS Professor Vincent Cunnane said, “I’m very pleased with the success of RUN-EU in being selected as a European university in what was a highly competitive call. The success of RUN-EU represents a new direction for higher education in Europe. Internationalisation has always been at the heart of our educational approach, as it provides opportunities for growth and learning and gives our student body a well-rounded, holistic educational experience. Indeed, the selection of RUN-EU is not just a recognition of the standing of technological higher education, but also a recognition of role of regions in the EU’s future.” 

TUS VP for Research Development and Innovation and RUN-EU project leader, Dr Liam Brown said, “The education landscape across Europe is changing. Strengthening strategic partnerships through our associate partner advisory board across the EU and the higher education institutions encourages the emergence of 'European Universities' as one of the flagship initiatives of the EU’s ambitions to build a European Education Area. The Regional University Network-European University (RUN-EU) facilitated through our student advisory boards enables our students to obtain a degree by combining studies in our campuses spread across our consortium and contribute to the international competitiveness of our RUN-EU European University.”

TUS Head of Research and Technology Transfer and RUN-EU project leader, Dr Paudie Murray, “RUN-EU will be transformative for our students and our regions. We will promote and develop joint student-centred, challenge and work-based flexible learning activities, including Short Advanced Programmes, European Degrees and our research Discovery Program, through collaborative and innovative inter-university and interregional approaches to higher education, research and innovation.”

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