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Duisburg-Essen Aurora Biannual

May 1-3, 2018

University of Duisburg-Essen

Twice a year, academics, leaders and administrators from Aurora universities meet at one of the member universities' campuses.

On 1-3 May, 2018 the 4th bi-annual Aurora Network gathering has taken place at the University Duisburg-Essen, Germany.

Look at the photos here

The bi-annual Aurora gatherings consist of:

  • A number of parallel thematic workshops, both of the key priorities of the Aurora Network and on other themes that are interesting to all, most or some of the academics/ administrators concerned in the Aurora Network partner universities.
  • The Presidents’ meeting, which is the formal general council meeting of the Aurora Network association.
  • A plenary meeting at which the various working groups report on their progress, plans and aspirations and at which the strategic development of the Aurora Network of engaged research universities takes shape.


You can find the program grouped per day below or download the schedule here.

Working Groups

In the key priorities of Aurora: – Diversity & Inclusion, – Societal Impact & Relevance of Research, – Student Engagement, and – Innovation of Teaching & Learning, an programme strategy is the basis for distinct Aurora projects that are now in various phases of implementation. A limited number of these working groups met during the Duisburg-Essen Aurora Biannual in Essen. Others meet at other moments at one of the Aurora universities or in virtual conference settings, or plan to meet at the Antwerp Aurora Biannual, 29/30 November 2018.

You can find an overview and description of the workshops below or  download an overview here

Open Forum Debate: University Democracy

From 11.00-12.30 A forum debate took place in the Glaspavillon.

Find more information on the debate below or download a PDF here

University democracy can and does mean very different things in different higher education systems in Europe. The level of autonomy granted to universities differs. Aurora universities are subject to different governance traditions and legal frameworks: some universities work in a corporate framework (e.g. UEA and VUA), while many of the others work in a framework of elected leadership. Within these systems, various internal stakeholders like professors, other academics, students and non/academic staff may have different formal mandates. Independent of the formal mandate, tradition may give some stakeholders a stronger or weaker influence in practice than their official mandate shows.

The Plenary Session

Download the pfd with supplementary information on the Plenary session.

Both plenary sessions will have time for discussion.

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