BI4E: Six Months of Collaboration and Innovation for a Better Europe

The Boosting INGENIUM for Excellence (BI4E) project is a Horizon Europe initiative that aims to improve the capacity of the partner higher education institutions, particularly those in the widening countries, to address major challenges, including the twin green and digital transition, climate change and global problems addressed in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

The project involves eight institutions of higher education that are part of the INGENIUM alliance.

The BI4E Project Secures Funding

The BI4E project was successfully applied and granted by the European Commission in March 2022. The project has a total budget of 2 million euros and a duration of four years. 

The project reflects the ambition of enhancing the existing inter-university cooperation between the partner universities, as well as with other entities (both international and local), and to strengthen the higher education institutions’ capacity to meet the diverse challenges faced by the higher education system and institutions.

Launching the project

The kick-off meeting and the first steering committee meeting of the BI4E Consortium took place on 7 October 2022 at the University of Rouen Normandy – CURIB, gathering 25 participants – members of the project teams and representatives of the partner universities. Because all partner universities in the BI4E project are also members of the INGENIUM Alliance of European Universities, the kick-off event was connected with the second INGENIUM Symposium, hosted by URN on 5 – 6 October.

BI4E Kick-Off Meeting (Photo by Maxime Angot).

The event laid the groundwork for the efficient running of the project implementation and ensured a common understanding of all the partners on the project development and their key roles. It was also an opportunity for the partners to introduce their project teams and get more information about the project management procedures.

Strengthening the BI4E Network with Associated Partners from Different Sectors and Regions

The project has secured the support of several associated partners from different sectors and regions, who will contribute with their expertise, resources, and networks. These include:

– AGENTIA PENTRU DEZVOLTARE REGIONALA NORD-EST (NORTH EAST RDA), SC INTELECTRO IASI SRL (INTELECTRO) AND TEHNOPOLIS SRL (TEHNOPOLIS), associated to TUIASI. These partners are involved in regional development, smart specialisation, innovation ecosystems, and technology transfer in Romania.

– INSTITUTO DE DESARROLLO ECONOMICO DEL PRINCIPADO DE ASTURIAS (IDEPA) and COMPANIA PARA LA GESTION DE RESIDUOS SOLIDOS EN ASTURIAS SA (COGERSA), associated to UNIOVI. These partners are responsible for promoting economic development, innovation, circular economy, and environmental sustainability in Asturias.

– UNIVERSITY OF MEDICINE – PLEVEN (MU-Pleven), MEDITCINSKY UNIVERSITET-PLOVDIV (MU-Plovdiv) AND MEDICAL UNIVERSITY OF VARNA (MU-Varna), associated to MUS. These partners are leading medical universities in Bulgaria, with expertise in health sciences, biotechnology, digital health, and clinical research.

– CENTRE HOSPITALIER UNIVERSITAIRE DE ROUEN (CHU-ROUEN) AND INSTITUT NATIONAL DES SCIENCES APPLIQUEES DE ROUEN (INSA Rouen), associated to URN. These partners are a university hospital and an engineering school in Rouen, with strong competences in biomedical engineering, medical imaging, robotics, artificial intelligence, and health innovation.

– IT@CORK ASSOCIATION LIMITED (IT@CORK) AND CIT INNOVATION CENTRE LIMITED (RUBICON CENTRE), associated to MTU. These partners are a network of technology companies and a business incubation centre in Cork, with a focus on digital transformation, entrepreneurship, innovation support, and regional development.

Sharing and learning: the BI4E local info-days

As part of the project’s dissemination and exploitation activities, some partner universities have organized several Info-Day events, where they have showcased their expertise and best practices on a specific topic.

The first local Info-Day was organized by Munster Technological University (MTU) on March 3rd and focused on how to build an innovation strategy that aligns with the university’s goals and supports its research and civic engagement. The event featured a presentation by Dr. Declan Weldon, Executive Director of Innovation and Engagement at the University of Glasgow, who shared his insights and experiences on developing and implementing an innovation strategy.

MTU Info-Day Event (Photo by Darragh Kane).

The next event will be held by the University of Rouen-Normandy (URN) in July. The topic of this event will be sustainable development and governance, and will consist of a virtual round-table where the BI4E universities will share their good practices on this matter. It will also have an open discussion where the audience will be able to ask questions and initiate debates.

What is next

The BI4E project is divided into several work packages that cover different aspects of the project implementation. The work packages are led by different partner universities and involve various activities and tasks. The work on the project is underway and we are making progress on our objectives and deliverables.

Some examples of the work we are doing are:

  • Developing a common vision and strategy for the BI4E alliance, based on a survey and seminars on strategic planning.
  • Enhancing our research excellence, innovation potential and internationalisation, by sharing and transferring best practices and knowledge among partners.

We are working hard to make the BI4E project a success and to boost the INGENIUM alliance. We invite you to follow our updates and to join us in our activities.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s HORIZON-WIDERA-2021-ACCESS-05-01-European Excellence Initiative under Grant Agreement No. 101071321 -BI4E

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