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New Alliance between Vancouver and Berlin

Freie Universität Berlin and the University of British Columbia sign a new strategic partnership agreement to foster innovation in research and teaching

№ 150/2014 from May 06, 2014

On May 2, a new strategic cooperation agreement was signed between Freie Universität Berlin and the University of British Columbia (UBC). It is the first strategic alliance between a German and a Canadian university in which both institutions set out to use synergies systematically and to foster cooperation in research and teaching between Berlin and Vancouver.

Building up on the successful cooperation between both universities in the past few years, the new agreement responds to the high level of interest on both sides among students and faculty. Future initiatives will focus on the development of collaborative teaching activities and joint study programs, the promotion of junior researchers, particularly on the doctoral and postdoctoral level, as well as joint research projects and the commercialization of technology. In support of these goals, both universities are establishing a joint seed money funding scheme and will appoint specific partnership coordinators.

“This new transatlantic alliance has the potential to become an exemplary German-Canadian partnership,” said Prof. Dr. Peter-André Alt, the president of Freie Universität Berlin. “The teaming up of two highly dynamic world-class universities will open up new exciting opportunities to our students and researchers alike,” he added. “With today’s signing, Freie Universität and UBC affirm our joint commitment to world class research and to deliver an enriched student experience,” underlined Prof. Dr. Stephen Toope, the president of the University of British Columbia

Freie Universität Berlin and the University of British Columbia share a strong international outlook in research and teaching. Their internationalization concepts include strategic partnerships with select universities and research institutions abroad. Freie Universität’s current network of strategic partnerships includes institutions in China, Russia and Israel, with new initiatives being developed with European partners. The strategic partnerships network of the University of British Columbia currently features Sciences Po, the University of Tokyo, and Peking University, as well as the Max Planck Society and Freie Universität Berlin in Germany

The University of British Columbia is a global center for research and teaching, consistently ranked among the 40 best universities in the world. Since 1915, UBC's West Coast spirit has embraced innovation and challenged the status quo. Its entrepreneurial perspective encourages students, staff, and faculty to challenge convention, lead discovery, and explore new ways of learning

Freie Universität Berlin is one of eleven German Universities of Excellence. An internationally oriented university in the capital of Germany, it is particularly strong in the humanities and social sciences as well as in the life sciences, natural sciences, and medicine.

Further Information

  • Matthias Kuder, Center for International Cooperation, Freie Universität Berlin, Telefon: +49 30 838-73942, Email: matthias.kuder@fu-berlin.de
  • Leonel Roldan, Associate Director, International, The University of British Columbia, Tel.: +1 604-822-3618, Email: roldan@mail.ubc.ca