Over the past decades, higher education has become an important driver for social and economic innovation and development, and an important priority for national development agendas. Higher education sectors have thus expanded and diversified considerably, taking on new missions. In this context, higher education has also become much more globally oriented and international. Beyond international research collaboration and teaching exchanges, universities today engage in partnerships that range from local community projects to global enterprise collaboration.
The conference presents and compares some of these development trends in Latin America and Europe. Focus will be placed on the processes and initiatives that enhance international collaboration and regional integration which have gained speed in both regions, and the roles that university leadership and university associations play.
The role of university associations in stimulating regional collaboration is the cornerstone of the Alfa-Puentes project, a three year project coordinated by the European University Association and 23 regional and national university associations in Latin America and Europe, for which this major bi-regional event is being organized.
Organised by two of the project partners, the European University Association and the Association of Universities ‘Grupo Montevideo (AUGM), and hosted by four globally engaged universities of São Paulo, this conference will provide an excellent opportunity for Latin American and European university associations and leadership to exchange on higher education policy and practice and contribute to defining future priorities for collaboration between the two regions. Beyond, it will also offer considerable opportunities for meeting and networking.