Chalmers is the fourth university in the world, and the first in Europe, to receive this official recognition, after careful consideration from ACEEU
, the Accreditation Council for Entrepreneurial and Engaged Universities.
“On behalf of the entire Council I congratulate Chalmers University of Technology for having achieved ACEEU accreditation. ACEEU accreditation is awarded to those institutions that understand and implement engagement as a key aspect of their university. In Chalmers we found such an engaged university and a great example of how a university can contribute to a more sustainable future by fostering engagement with external stakeholders“, says Professor Thorsten Kliewe, Chair of the Council.
The Award will be officially presented to Chalmers University of Technology during the 2019 University-Industry Interaction Conference
in Helsinki, Finland, attended by 500+ academics and practitioners from more than 50 countries.
“I am delighted and proud that we have received this recognition for the way in which we try to achieve an impact, as one of the first ‘engaged universities’ in the world. Chalmers has a long tradition of engagement with industry and society at large, which is well established and well-known in Sweden, and we have high ambitions to develop this ability even further,” says Fredrik Hörstedt, Vice President of Utilisation at Chalmers University of Technology.
The highest grade "Excellent" was awarded for Chalmers external involvement in research, and its collaboration with, and influence on, the surrounding region and the city. According to ACEEU, this is achieved through, among other things, a rich range of engaging services and activities. This is also reflected in the financial management of Chalmers. The culture at Chalmers and the internal support functions also received the highest rating.
“The importance of making an impact is well understood among our researchers. Academic incentives are in place, and this is part of Chalmers’ culture today, I would say. Our students arrive with the right attitude and are given many opportunities to contribute. But also, the way we are structured is very important. Our Areas of Advance help to focus challenge-driven research across discipline-boundaries, in close cooperation with industry and the public sector. This approach has been very fruitful,” says Angela Hillemyr, Head of the Mechanics and Maritime Sciences Department.
A number of institutional criteria received the lower grade "Satisfactory" from ACEEU, for example, the extent to which clear goals for engagement are established and understood throughout the organisation internally. ACEEU also believes that there is potential to increase the number of projects linked to local and regional challenges.
“We appreciate the feedback we have received, and we know now that we can communicate what we do – and how we do it – more effectively to the outside world. We also want to engage even more in the development of the city and region in a concerted effort, to foster genuine knowledge exchange and co-creation with external actors, for both education and research offerings,” says Karolina Partheen, Head of Chalmers Innovation Office.
Text: Christian Borg