Lead by the idea of strengthening the link between teaching, research, innovation and knowledge transfer, encouraging mobility and enhancing the high quality and excellence in education and research, the five European universities unite their efforts based on their previous cooperation in European educational, research and mobility projects to achieve their common goal - to establish a European university alliance, called INnoVations of REgional Sustainability: European UniversiTy Alliance - INVEST, targeting their cooperation for developing joint and innovative education and research study programs and curricula, as well as the implementation of multilingual learning, blended and work-based learning and European mobilities. The INVEST alliance will target its activities at students at all 3 study cycles - bachelor, master and doctoral, together with the academic and non-academic staff of the alliance partners. The alliance builds its essence on the four strategic pillars: (1) Competitive education and valuable learning outcomes, (2) Collective excellent research and innovation, (3) High mobility level beyond the Europe, and (4) Networking as the platform for future education and research, covering the three main focus areas - Water, Energy Food and Environment Nexus, Quality of Life and Entrepreneurship. Establishing the Living Labs as innovative platforms for the quadruple helix (research, education, companies/NGO’s and GO’s) collaboration with the stakeholders from the regions, together with innovative solutions, such as Virtual Campus or the EDUC8EU integrated platform, the INVEST alliance will create perfect conditions to build a modern European University, satisfying needs and requirements of the new generation of Europeans as the leaders of introducing sustainable life in regions across the Europe, responding current global challenges determined within the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The INVEST alliance consist of 5 partner universities for all geographic areas of Europe:
1. Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, Slovakia, project coordinator,
2. University of Agribusiness and Rural Development, Plovdiv, Bulgaria,
3. University of Thessaly, Volos, Greece
4. Karelia University of Applied Sciences, Joensuu, Finland,
5. Van Hall Larenstein, University of Applied Sciences, Leeuwarden, Netherlands.
The project started on 1 November 2020. Its duration is 36 months; official end of the project is planned on 31 October 2023.
The estimated eligible costs of the implementation of the project are EUR 4 844 585, 50 EUR. The maximum grant amount provided by the European Commission is EUR 3 875 668,40 EUR, covering 80% of the total expenditures.