European Neighbourhood

Higher education and research play a key role in fostering cooperation between the European Union and its neighbours. Universities build bridges across political, cultural and economic borders through student and staff mobility, research collaborations, and through studying and teaching foreign cultures.

EUA believes that international collaboration enhances the quality of universities’ work. Capacity building within Europe and with neighbours will lead to a better and more inclusive research and higher education community. This helps increase understanding between cultures and thereby contributes to stability and progress.

More than 250,000 people cross borders between the European Economic Area and neighbouring countries annually. In addition, thousands of institutional partnerships stretch across the EU’s eastern border and across the Mediterranean.

EUA has a large membership far beyond the EU, including 122 institutions in EU neighbourhood and accession countries, as well as 32 institutions in Russia and Kazakhstan. These higher education institutions participate in EUA events and projects and contribute to the community of European universities. Importantly, the Bologna process gathers 48 higher education systems, and several of the countries defined as Neighbourhood countries in the EU context participate to the Bologna process, and are members of the European Higher Education Area. The Association works towards improving higher education in the whole region, using the advantage of its diversity with a common purpose. EUA supports the action of the network of Higher Education Reform Experts (HERE), a pool of experts for the modernisation of higher education in EU Neighbourhood countries. EUA’s efforts in this area can also be seen in its global relations activities, its work on university autonomy and governance as well as its work on the Sustainable Development Goals.


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Expert voices



    Strengthening university autonomy and increasing accountability and transparency of Western Balkan universities The STAND project aims to improve the processes and mechanisms of university autonomy by...

    Transition to University Autonomy in Kazakhstan The TRUNAK project seeks to enhance university autonomy in Kazakhstan. It seeks to develop both...

    Modernisation of Institutional Management of Innovation and Research in Southern Neighbouring Countries The MIMIR project is part of a cooperation process between Arab and European universities aimed at...
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    Centralised Support for Higher Education Reform Experts The University of Barcelona (Coordinator) and the European University Association (EUA) comprise...

    Fostering Sustainable and Autonomous Higher Education Systems in the Eastern Neighbouring Area The ATHENA project contributed to the development, reform and modernisation of higher education...

    Empowering universities to fulfil their responsibility for Quality Assurance (2012-2015) The EUREQA project brought together partners from the Western Balkans and the European Union to...

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