At University West, internationalization is a designated area of development. It is described as a way to increase the quality of education and research and to make the university more inclusive at an international level.
Africa is an increasingly important part of the world economically and culturally, but the interaction between University West and African universities has so far been somewhat limited. But the two new projects aim to change that.
The projects are designated to the Department of Social and Behavioural Studies and the Department of Engineering Science.
Diversity in Education and Teacher Education
The project Diversity in Education and Teacher Education, conducted at the Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, is led by Professor Kerstin von Brömssen at University West, together with colleague Ambissa Kenea Boru, Associate professor at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia.
Kerstin explains that the project will focus on diversity and teacher education. These are not only important issues here in Sweden, but also in Ethiopia.
One of the project’s goals is to make it possible for students and teachers to meet on site and exchange experiences and knowledge.
- The goal is for us to be able to visit each other, but we will have to wait and see when we can travel and establish these contacts, says Kerstin. We must learn from each other. To meet and take part in each other’s view of knowledge, people and resources is very important.
In the project, University West and Addis Ababa University will collaborate in research, but also by holding joint online seminars for the students.
International collaboration in production technology
At the Department of Engineering Science, the initiation grant entails expanded international collaboration in research and education in the field of production technology. University West will establish collaboration with Dedan Kimathi University of Technology in Kenya, Kyambogo University in Uganda, and University of Buea in Cameroon. The project manager is Paul Kah, Professor at University West explains:
- An important aspect is that as a result of the differing operating environments in Africa and northern Europe, the project will enable partner universities to build up capacity, competence and knowledge in areas of engineering that have hitherto received limited attention. Additionally, the multiple perspectives provided by the partnering universities will offer opportunities for development of teaching practices and research output.
The focus will also be on creating an understanding of each other's culture, both on a private level, as well as on a professional level. The increased internationalization that project like this entails results in, among other things, increased quality in education and research as well as increased competence among the staff.