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Graduate SPIRIT at the 12th International Higher Education Congress “UNIVERSIDAD 2020”

Dr. Astrid Wind gave a presentation about the Graduate SPIRIT project at the international congress UNIVERSIDAD 2020 in Havana, Cuba. The 12th International Higher Education Congress took place from 10-14 February 2020 at the Palacio de Convenciones with approximately 2000 participants from 50 different countries. The importance of this international event was emphasized by the participation of the President of the Republic of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel, in the opening ceremony at the Karl Marx Theatre. The Cuban Minister of Higher Education, gave the formal opening speech.

In its 12th version, the congress offered a series of lectures, workshops, round table discussions and a large higher education fair, where Cuban and foreign universities and funding organisations principally from Latin America, Europe and Africa presented their offers.

Dr. Wind spoke about the Graduate SPIRIT project in her round table presentation about “Innovación y calidad de los estudios de postgrado” (“Innovation and quality in postgraduate studies”), and discussed with the participating university professors and higher education specialist the significance of the transnational EU project as well its transfer possibilities for universities in Latin America and other regions. Following on from the presentation, further meetings with representatives of universities at the higher education fair were arranged.

Flyers about the Graduate SPIRIT project were distributed at the higher education fair and congress that was visited by the majority of the 2000 participants. Around 300 participants signed up at the congress to view and test the innovation menu once it will be available online.

After the congress, Dr. Wind arranged a longer meeting with the Vice-Rector and the Director of International Relations at the University of Havana, where details about both Graduate SPIRIT and the Heidelberg Graduate School for the Humanities and Social Sciences (HGGS) were discussed. The Vice-Rector and the Director expressed their great interest and explained that the University of Havana already had plans to establish their own graduate school. The parties agreed to develop a joint project to design a model for a graduate school in Havana that will be based on the experience of the HGGS and Graduate SPIRIT. To solidify the exchange, Dr. Wind also met with authorities at the Higher Education Ministry of Cuba, who support the initiative on the state level.

Update march 2020: due to the Corona virus and its impact across the Globe all future collaborations and the Graduate SPIRIT consortium have been postponed until further notice.


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