Driving innovation in Europe’s universities

Credits: © Pierre-Yves Landouer

Innovation is beneficial to society as a whole and embraces all fields of knowledge. Technological, medical, social, cultural and educational innovation is changing the world, and those driving it decide on the direction. As creators and providers of knowledge and places of societal reflection, universities have a central role in shaping the future and in nurturing the next generation of leaders, innovators, entrepreneurs and researchers.

More photos available here.



Europe’s universities are integral parts of local, national and international innovation ecosystems, working with partners in the private and public sectors and jointly developing solutions to societal and economic challenges. In this context, universities provide a unique environment, ensuring critical mass and the diversity needed to address these challenges. They also create institutional cultures geared towards innovation, whether it is in high-quality learning and teaching or ground-breaking research.

EUA’s 2019 Annual Conference will focus on how universities can develop strategies to shape today’s innovation and that of the future. Through plenary and breakout sessions of various formats, including audience participation, the conference will provide insights into the policies and practices that enable innovation and entrepreneurship to thrive at universities.

The event will be of interest to institutional leaders (rectors, vice-rectors and heads of administration), higher education researchers and analysts, as well as representatives of other bodies involved in educational policy.





Hosted by:




The conference venue, Sorbonne University (Campus Pierre et Marie Curie), is located a few minutes away from the Latin Quarter (“Quartier Latin”), which is very popular with students and professors, because of the presence of numerous institutions of higher education and research. You will be able to enjoy the Panthéon, the Arènes de Lutèce, the Jardin des Plantes and the National Museum of Natural History or Ile Saint-Louis and the famous Notre Dame Cathedral.

No block bookings have been made for the conference, as Paris offers a wide range of accommodation, in various price categories.

The Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau offers more information on accommodation options and on how to make a reservation.

For your reference, below is a selection of hotels that are located in the vicinity of the conference venue.

Hôtel Ibis Paris Avenue d'Italie
15Bis Avenue d'Italie
75013 Paris

Hôtel Mercure Paris Place d'Italie
25 Boulevard Auguste Blanqui
75013 Paris

Hôtel Best Western Quartier Latin
71 Rue Monge
75005 Paris

Qualys Hôtel Apolonia Mouffetard
56 Rue Mouffetard
75005 Paris

Hôtel des Nations St-Germain
54 Rue Monge
75005 Paris

Hôtel Libertel Austerlitz Jardin des Plantes
12 Boulevard de l'Hôpital
75005 Paris

Hôtel Devillas
4 Boulevard Saint-Marcel
75005 Paris


Thursday 11 April 2019 

Sorbonne Université
Campus Pierre et Marie Curie, Auditorium
4 place Jussieu
75005 Paris

Please download documents for the EUA General Assembly using the links below. 



1. Approval of the Agenda

2. Approval of the Minutes of the 20th EUA General Assembly at the University of Zurich on 5 April 2018

3. Approval of the Rules of Procedure

4. Election of the EUA President to serve from 2019 to 2023

5. Approval of the 2018 Financial Report and Accounts, including audit reports Brussels and Geneva, balance sheet and profit & loss accounts, key financial indicators and accounts Belgian format (explanatory note)

6. Approval of the 2019 budget and preview of the 2020 budget (explanatory note)

7. Appointment of the auditors for the 2019 accounts

8. Election of EUA Board members to serve from 2019 to 2023

9. Approval of 2020 subscriptions for EUA members (explanatory note + overview of membership evolution 2018)
     i. Individual full members
     ii. Collective full members
     iii. Individual associate members
     iv. Collective associate members (European networks)
     v. Affiliates
     vi. Council for Doctoral Education

10. Presentation of key activities in 2018 and 2019 (Annual Report 2018 & Key Activities 2019)

11. AOB


Thursday, 11 April

10.00-13.00 EUA General Assembly
12.30-14.00 Lunch

Official Opening and Plenary Session I: Universities as key players in innovation

Opening by Rolf Tarrach, EUA President and Jean Chambaz, President, Sorbonne University, France

Sophia Eriksson Waterschoot, Director for Youth, Education and Erasmus++, European Commission

Jean-Eric Paquet, Director-General Research and Innovation, European Commission

Chaired by Jean Chambaz

15.30-16.00 Coffee break

Breakout Sessions, Round I

-        The role of universities in regional innovation ecosystems
Sybille Reichert, Reichert Consulting

-        Fostering entrepreneurship among students at the University of Cagliari
Maria Chiara di Guardo and Alessandra Carucci, University of Cagliari

-        A university-wide approach to innovation by Coventry University
Clive Winters and Gregg Jones, Coventry University

16.45-17.00 Break to move back to the plenary session

Plenary Session II: Fostering new generations of innovators

Anna Valtonen, Vice-President, Art and Creative Practices, Aalto University, Finland

Romain Baude, Co-Founder and President, APREX Solutions

Nuno Reis, President, University of Minho Students’ Union, Portugal

Chaired by Andrée Sursock, Senior Adviser, EUA

19.30-22.30 Networking Reception and Gala Dinner

Friday, 12 April


Breakout Sessions, Round II

      - Institutional approaches to enhancing sustainability:
A whole-institution approach to embedding sustainable development at University College Cork, Europe’s first STARS® Gold University
Maria Kirrane, John O’Halloran, Ger Mullally and Mark Poland
, University College Cork

A university's experience in linking innovation and international collaboration to facilitate change in the healthcare eco-system
Baiba Pētersone
, Rīga Stradiņš University

Collaboration in interdisciplinary programmes
Developing inter-disciplinary master’s programmes with inspiration from strategic partners: A challenging innovative education perspective 
Ann-Charlotte Larsson and Niklas Ammert, Linnaeus University

Educational innovation examples from the LIFE Projects at Tallinn University Priit Reiska, Aet Möllits and Merily Heinalo, Tallinn University

       -Promoting entrepreneurship
Building a value-creating ecosystem on campus: The METU case
Mustafa Verşan Kök
, Middle East Technical University

The UZH Innovation Hub – a case study of the University of Zurich
Michael Hengartner
, University of Zurich

 - Interactive workshop: Developing universities role in regional innovation ecosystems
Sybille Reichert, Reichert Consulting

11.00-11.30 Coffee break

Plenary Session III: Building partnerships

Alexandros Papaderos, Deputy Head, Office for Research & Innovation – Head of Patents and Licences, Technical University of Munich, Germany

Milena Žic Fuchs, Professor, University of Zagreb, Croatia

Léopold Demiddeleer, Managing Director, TechBridgeOne

Chaired by Mikuláš Bek, Rector, Masaryk University


Conference closing and invitation to the EUA Annual Conference 2020

13.00-14.00 Lunch

EUA Hot Topic Session

Magnus Rattray, Director, Data Science Institute, University of Manchester, United Kingdom

Thomas Metzinger, Professor, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, Germany

Laurence Devillers, Professor, Sorbonne University, France

Chaired by Peter A. Wieringa, Pro Vice Rector, TU Delft

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