University-Business Cooperation in Sofia

March 26, 2018

The Thematic University-Business Forum ‘University – Business Cooperation – A Partnership for Modernization and Growth’ was held on 22-23 February in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Our CEO Kristina Tsvetanova was officially invited by The European Commission initiative committee, Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science and the Bulgarian Industrial Association which are part of the framework of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

The University-Business Forum is part of the European Commission initiative to support closer and better cooperation between higher education and business in the EU. Established in 2008, the University Business Forum provides a unique platform for stakeholders from academia and the business sector for sharing experience and good practices, for mutual learning and inspiration. The UB Forum events have generated many new ideas, some of which have resulted in European policy initiatives, as the Knowledge Alliances under Erasmus+ and HEInnovate, a self-assessment tool developed in cooperation with the OCED for higher education institutions to assess and develop their innovative and entrepreneurial potential.

Celebrating Forum’s 10th anniversary, the day and a half event  brought together representatives from higher education and business as well as local, regional and public authorities.

Kristina  was active participant and speaker at the Panel Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation: addressing societal challenges through innovation.” 

We are in a time of great upheaval and many of the social provisions and structures that used to be provided by the state are being eroded. European demographics have changed dramatically in the past 30 years and many new societal challenges have arisen on the back of this, exacerbated by years of financial crisis. In response we have seen the emergence of new modes of cooperation and cultural and social engagement and solidarity. Social entrepreneurship is increasingly recognized as filling the gap left by the state. This session presented and discussed some examples how HEI and business cooperate like BLITAB TECHNOLOGY  to address societal challenges, how HEIs reach out to the community to solve problems faced by its citizens and to stimulate social innovation.

The participants discussed how modernization and growth can be supported through more effective links and relationships between higher education institutions and business.

Overall the Forum was structured around plenary keynote presentations, panel discussions, and three parallel breakout sessions focusing on Leadership, Management and Governance, Driving Regional Innovation and Development and Entrepreneurship Education and Development.

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