From 24th – 26th of June 2019, the partners of the TIGRIS project convened at Masaryk University, Brno for the Workshop on Strategy Development, Change Management and Internationalisation of Doctoral Training. The workshop was organised in tandem with the project’s annual Consortium Meeting.
In Brno, the project team and participants of the workshop were welcomed first by Dr. Jan Pavlik, Director of the Centre for International Cooperation at Masaryk University, followed by short welcome addresses by the project’s coordinator Dr. Uwe Muuss (University of Göttingen), and regional co-coordinator Prof. Dr. Polla Khanaqa (Kurdistan Institution for Strategic Studies and Scientific Research).
The assembled TIGRIS consortium then immediately got into work by holding the annual Consortium Meeting. First, the consortium jointly reviewed the results of the midterm progress reports to the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), which previously assessed the project’s implementation as “good”.
Here, the project’s coordinator Dr. Uwe Muuss presented a detailed overview of the results to the consortium, after which the partners engaged in discussing the results and advice given by the EACEA, as a result devising follow-ups and a timeline for their implementation.
The Consortium Meeting then proceeded with a joint session conducted by Jakob Hedderich, TIGRIS Project Manager at the University of Göttingen, in which the partners reviewed in detail the project’s past implementation and achievements and engaged in planning for the implementation of activities in the second half of the TIGRIS project. As a result, the consortium devised a detailed implementation plan and time schedule.
As final activity of the Consortium Meeting, the partners lead by the TIGRIS Financial Officer Laura C. Hoffmann (University of Göttingen) jointly reviewed the financial status of the project and discussed the management of the grant.
After a short break, the consortium then kicked off the workshop’S training activities of the first day with a section devoted to the development of internationalisation strategies. Here, Dr. Uwe Brandenburg (Global Impact Institute) gave a presentation summarizing the development work done so far while also addressing the development of indicators and benchmarks in a concise training exercise. A joint working session on the strategy drafts followed paving the way for finalising the strategy development scheduled for August 2019.
The second day of the workshop was devoted to the management of change processes at higher education institutions (HEIs) as well as the internationalisation of doctoral training.
Aiming to support Kurdish partners in implementing reforms for the internationalisation of higher education and managing the coming processes of change at their institutions, Dr. Uwe Muuss (University of Göttingen) conducted a workshop session on change management with the partner institution’s top management present during the workshop.
Tackling another key topic for Kurdish partners, Jef Schrooten (KU Leuven) during the second half of the day delivered a training on joint international doctoral education, thereby introducing the Kurdish partners to contemporary European best practices while also conducting a training exercise exemplary applying these concepts to the case of the Kurdish partners. In part, the training session built on the findings of the Graduate SPIRIT project, another Erasmus+ sponsored project.
On the third and final day, the participants split into two groups: While the TIGRIS Focal Points and project managers participated in a second project management meeting, the university presidents and vice-presidents joint Dr. Jan Pavlik (Masaryk University) for a Q&A session on internationalisation and HEI governance.
As a final activity of the workshop, participants went on a guided campus tour kindly organised by Violeta Osouchová and Adam Hykl of the Centre for International Cooperation at Masaryk University, providing Kurdish and European partners with the chance to get an inside look into the facilities and inner workings of Masaryk University.