Arqus holds its third Annual Conference from 3rd to 5th April in Graz!
|21 Mar 2023
The Arqus major annual event has included a plenary session on Human Rights, on the occasion of the celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that takes place this year.
The rest of the sessions are aimed at sharing the progress on the various action lines, strengthening collaborative ties among partners, and renewing their joint commitment towards the achievement of the long-term goals set in research, education, inclusion, multilingualism and engagement with society.
It will be the first Annual Conference held under the new Arqus Work Plan for 2022-2026 (Arqus II) and the first one for Maynooth University, which recently joined the Alliance as the ninth full member. Nearly 250 representatives from all university members, including senior managers, academics, administrative and professional staff, students, doctoral researchers and stakeholders will gather at this great event, which this year is dedicated to the defense and promotion of human rights. This is one of the core values of the Arqus Alliance, along with democracy, respect for diversity, solidarity, and the search for peace and justice in Europe and the world.
The official opening of the Conference will take place on Tuesday, 4th April, in a session broadcast live on the Arqus YouTube channel that will count on the participation of the Rector of the University of Graz, Peter Riedler, a member of the Municipal Council of the City of Graz, Christian Kozina-Voit, and the Austrian Federal Minister of Education, Science and Research, Martin Polaschek.
On the day before the opening, the Conference will host the Arqus Rectors’ Council as well as a full-day workshop dedicated to strategic planning, bringing together Rectors, Vice-Rectors, members of the International Advisory Board, and the leaders of “Arqus Development”, the work package dedicated to the institutional design of the Alliance. The Styrian provincial government will host a welcome reception in the evening.
The first Plenary Session, focused on the central theme of the Conference: “Promoting Human Rights in Arqus”, will take place on Tuesday from 09:45 to 10:45 CET. Patrycja Matusz (Vice-Rector for Projects and International Relations at the University of Wroclaw), Myroslava Antonovych (Head of the Center for Genocide and Human Rights Studies at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy), Sjur Bergan (former Head of the Council of Europe’s Education Department), and Lisa Heschl (Deputy Director of the European Training and Research Centre for Human Rights and Democracy at the University of Graz) will participate in this round table. The second plenary session will be held on Wednesday from 11:00 CET and will address the Conference’s key insights from the members of the Arqus Action Line Boards and the Arqus Student Council. During this session, the winners of the traditional and well-recognised Arqus Teaching Excellence Award will be announced in its two categories “enabling research-based teaching” and “enabling students”. Both plenary sessions will be streamed live on the Alliance’s YouTube channel.
During the Conference, parallel meetings will be held among the members of the three Arqus Action Lines (Education, Research and Innovation, and Social Engagement) to present the updates of the different work packages, reflect on synergies between them, and plan the next steps. At the end of this day, the participants will be able to enjoy a city tour sponsored by the City of Graz.
In words of the Arqus Coordinator, Dorothy Kelly, “the Arqus Annual Conference is an excellent opportunity to continue building community for optimal progress towards the true integration of our universities. It is the idoneous space to look at the more immediate goals and needs of our Alliance and, at the same time, to discuss with a broader perspective how to face together the great challenges of our time in Europe and in the world. This year’s central theme, the promotion of human rights, is particularly relevant in a context of conflict and war in our continent and the crisis of many European values such as democracy and respect for diversity. I am delighted to count on the participation of representatives of the highest political authorities in the field of education in Austria as well as some of the members of the Arqus International Advisory Board, whose contributions to the Conference’s discussions will certainly be of great added value. And I am especially looking forward to sharing the advances made in the new Arqus phase and designing together the immediate future of the Arqus Alliance with our great community of students, academics, professionals and stakeholders”.
You can download the programme of the event here.