Our focus has been on writing a vision for T.I.M.E. (Top International Managers in Engineering) with a ten-year horizon and associated goals. In addition to supporting international cooperation between members in a broad sense, the network is continuing its cooperative efforts to promote more international double degree students, i.e. students that complete two degrees, primarily at advanced level. The latter was also the main reason the network was established 31 years ago at the École Centrale Paris when KTH was a founder member along with 15 other leading universities of technologies.
The idea of double degree students was seen as daring and at the 30th Anniversary gathering last autumn, many of the founder members talked about the resistance to the idea they encountered, not least when it came to national legislation and regulations, when different national and local systems had to be amended to cater for these students. Even so, they came to the conclusion that it would be worth it not to give up. And with all the wonderful experiences of these incredibly talented students, we can only wholeheartedly agree. The Director General of the European Space Agency, the then President of founder member Technische Universität Darmstadt in Germany, emphasised the importance of extensive experience of international cultural exchanges along with a deep and broad knowledge of technology for engineering students and learning to see several perspectives at the same time and the importance of international network building.
We have, together with the Secretary General who is based in Paris and the Management Board consisting of Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, Université Libre de Bruxelles and CentraleSupélec (in addition to KTH), worked in parallel to broaden the aims of the network to also embrace educational partnerships with the enterprise sector, cooperation within doctoral studies and to promote a broader international partnership to contribute to the 17 global goals in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
I am pleased that the vision was unanimously adopted in practice by the members at an online meeting a few weeks ago. The next meeting in 2021 will be held outside Europe, either physically or remotely – a good way to show that good international cooperation extends far beyond Europe alone. At this same meeting, KTH will also stand down as chair, as a member of the Management Board and Advisory Board, the latter consisting of 13 universities from ten countries around the world. I am looking forward with confidence to what we can achieve in the second half.
Tip of the week: Take a look at the T.I.M.E Association website for more information and inspiration.