NUI Galway Welcomes Elite University Leaders from Across Europe

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Creativity, Research and Innovation topic at Coimbra Conference

Video links to all speeches at the 2013 Coimbra Group Annual Conference are available below

NUI Galway has announced that the 2013 Coimbra Group Annual Conference will be addressed by President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins and will take place from 22 - 24 May at the University. The theme of this year’s conference is Creativity, Research and Innovation in Universities.

Founded in 1985 and formally constituted by Charter in 1987, the Coimbra Group is an association of long-established European multidisciplinary universities of high international standard.

NUI Galway is a long-standing member of the Coimbra Group and last hosted the Coimbra Group annual conference in 1988, twenty-five years ago. Other members include leading institutions such as University of Edinburgh, University of Cambridge, University of Oxford, Università di Bologna, Saint Petersburg State University and Trinity College Dublin.

The Coimbra Group is committed to creating special academic and cultural ties in order to promote, for the benefit of its members, internationalisation, academic collaboration, excellence in learning and research, and service to society. It is also the purpose of the Group to influence European educational policy and to develop best practice through mutual exchange of experience.

The symposium ‘Creativity, Research and Innovation in Universities’ on Friday, 24 May, will include a keynote address by President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins.

Other keynote speeches and panel discussions on the day will include contributions from:

  • Commissioner Maire Geoghegan Quinn, European Commissioner for Research,  Innovation & Science
  • Professor Carol Becker, Dean of the Arts, Columbia University, New York
  • Professor Joep  Leerssen, Professor of Modern European Languages, Universiteit van Amsterdam
  • Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General, Science Foundation Ireland & Chief Scientific Advisor to the Government of Ireland.

President of NUI Galway, Dr Jim Browne, said:NUI Galway is a proud member of the Coimbra Group since 1986. As a university on the western edge of Europe we value deeply the rich network of connections and links which the Group has fostered to promote excellence in scholarship, research and service to society. It is particularlyfitting that the conference returns to Galway in the year in which Ireland holds the Presidency of the European Union and at a time when the conference theme of Creativity, Research & Innovation in Universities could not be more relevant or timely for our European universities.”

Commissioner Máire Geoghegan Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation & Science, who will speak at the event, said: “If we want to tackle our biggest societal challenges and develop technology-based business, we need an excellent science base and we need to train creative graduates and foster critical and innovative mind-sets. In my view, universities should become 'innovation centres' for their region. They should train and retrain the workforce in cooperation with industry. Mobility between industry and academia should become the norm.”

Speaking in advance of the conference, Dorothy Kelly, Chair of the Coimbra Group Executive Board, commented: “We are delighted to be revisiting NUI Galway after 25 years. This year the theme is a reflection of the central role universities play in societal progress and wellbeing as open, diverse and critical spaces for the pursuit of knowledge something we look forward to discussing at length. We are particularly honoured this year to welcome to our meetings both the President of the Republic of Ireland, Dr Michael Higgins, and the European Commissioner for Research, Innovation & Science, Maire Geoghegan Quinn, as we hold our 29th General Assembly in Ireland and under the Irish presidency of the European Union.”

To view President Higgins' speech at the 2013 Coimbra Group Annual Conference click here

Videos from Coimbra Conference

President of Ireland, Dr Michael D. Higgins (43 minutes)

Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science (22 minutes)

Professor Carol Becker, Dean of Faculty and Professor of the Arts at Columbia University School of the Arts, New York (19 minutes)

Professor Joep Leerssen, Professor of Modern European Literature, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands (25 minutes)

Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General, Science Foundation Ireland & Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland(29 minutes)

 

 ENDS

Keywords: Press

Author: Marketing and Communications Office, NUI Galway
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