First Aurora micro-credential “Sustainability & Climate Change” awarded

On 2 February 2023, Universität Innsbruck awarded the first micro-credential certificate to Giusi Merola from Università Federico II di Napoli. The micro-credential, part of the Aurora joint programme on “Sustainability & Climate Change,” was awarded for Giusi’s completion of 10 ECTS credits.

Giusi is the first student, not just at Federico II but throughout the Aurora European University Alliance, to receive a micro-credential, making her the trailblazer for a new era in higher education within Aurora. A micro-credential is a record of the learning outcomes acquired after a short course of study. The courses are designed to provide students with specific knowledge, skills, and competencies that meet societal, personal, cultural, or labour market needs. Micro-credentials are portable and can be shared with potential employers or higher education institutions.

Giusi’s experience with the micro-credential was overwhelmingly positive. She shares, “During the lessons, we learned about climate change from various perspectives: anthropological, social, cultural, and scientific. We were given the tools to identify the realities that truly care about sustainability. As a final test, we wrote a report identifying companies close to receiving the B-Corp certification and developed a social start-up project which was presented at the European Forum of Alpbach in Austria to hundreds of students and investors. The experiences enriched me as a person, added valuable skills to my CV, and created numerous online and offline connections.”

The “Sustainability & Climate Change” micro-credential is a unique and innovative approach to learning that aligns with the European Council Recommendations. The micro-credential allows participating universities to share the latest research results with students in real time through research-led teaching and challenge-based learning. The certificate not only strengthens opportunities for inclusive international learning but also engages all partners in the Aurora Alliance to provide quality education. Moreover, the micro-credential certificate represents the effort for interoperability of the Aurora universities’ IT systems and connection to common European interfaces and platforms, such as Europass and European Digital Credentials for Learning. This is a further step to help overcome recognition problems that still exist in some places, often due to national study laws.

Universität Innsbruck’s issuance of the first micro-credential certificate demonstrates the potential for a new and innovative approach to learning across Aurora universities. The “Sustainability & Climate Change” micro-credential provides students with a unique opportunity to gain specialized knowledge and competencies while simultaneously addressing the challenges posed by climate change.

Aurora Duisburg-Essen Virtual Biannual

In less than a month, the Aurora community will gather virtually for our Autumn Biannual, hosted by the University of Duisburg-Essen.

The program looks to the future of Aurora and premiers research on sustainable futures for our planet. Expect short keynotes on clean water, sustainable tourism, and breaks filled with art, music and accounts of refugee routes by scholars- and artists-at-risk in the UDE Academy in Exile.

Register here to attend the biannual.

Click here to access the programme and biographies of speakers.





Workshop Outcomes – Peace Education for Karazin University, and GRT inclusion in higher education.

On 30 June 2022, two workshops titled ‘Developing a Peace Education Programme for Karazin Kharkiv National University in Ukraine’ and ‘Removing barriers to Higher Education for Gypsy, Roma and Travellers’, were organised and moderated by Dr Spyros Themelis (UEA) and Dr Selma Porobic (Palacky University Olomouc) at the University of East Anglia (UEA). The two workshops, implemented under the framework of the Culture: Identity and Diversity pilot domain were a great success and will produce concrete outcomes in the future.

‘Developing a Peace Education Programme for Karazin Kharkiv National University in Ukraine’

One of the developing features of Aurora support to Karazin Kharkiv National University is peace education programme. Peace education is an emerging field focusing on peacebuilding efforts through education in situations of collective trauma such as war, mass displacement, and genocide. This pedagogy focuses on the creation of safe environments for teachers and students to foster dialogue and reflection by enabling sharing of their own traumatic (and often conflictual) narratives and supporting perspective-taking.

Under the guidance of Dr. Selma Porobić, this workshop brought together 14 experts from over 9 different institutions, and aimed to  explore a collaborative model focusing on the development of peace education programme for Karazin Kharkiv University. During the group discussion two set of questions were addressed. Group A focused on how to develop Peace education (PE) as integral part of general competences for academicians at Karazin, while Group B focused on researching PE in the ongoing war situation in the city of Kharkiv and in the Eastern Ukraine.

Among the most significant outcomes of this workshop, are the establishment of the International Expert team for peace education platform at Karazin University and initial planning of peace education programme including timeline for different components, research methods, staff training and COILs.

Thanks to the SPACE Network, represented in the workshop by Elke Kitzelmann (UIBK), an initial donation was made towards the realization of the Peace Education platform and further Aurora collaborations with Karazin University. In addition, collaborations with UIBK’s new MA Peace Studies program, under prof. Andreas Oberprantacher were initiated as well.  As part of International Summer School in Refugee Law and Rights, co-organized by Palacky University and Karazin University, on August 24th, students from UIBK’s Peace studies  program will engage with Karazin University’s MA students in the plenary session ‘ Prospects for Peace Building, Recovery & Reconstruction.

We look forward to engagement from more Aurora universities. Enquiries about the PE program at Karazin University can be sent to Dr. Selma Porobić, coordinator for Aurora support to Karazin University.

‘Removing barriers to Higher Education for Gypsy, Roma and Travellers’

Gypsy, Roma and Travellers (GRT) are the largest ethnic minority and at the same time the most marginalised in Europe. It is little surprise, therefore, that they are also one of the most, if not the most, underrepresented group in higher education.

This workshop explored the types of barriers facing Gypsy, Roma and Traveller students in accessing Higher Education and experiences of inclusion and exclulsion. In total 15 participants attended the event, including academics, practitioners, reseach students, as well as inclusion leaders in schools and local councils. Participants were of Roma and non-Roma origin and they shared perspectives from a variety of European countries (including Germany, Greece, Iceland,  Sweeden, the Czech Republic, Romania and the UK) and institutional contexts, including, schools, universisties, musuems and local couincils.

One of the outcomes of this workshop, was the decision to create a network of Roma inclusion research in higher education. It was also agreed that this network will aim to map national and international policies of inclusion and examine national and international reports relevant to the topic. Finally, it was agreed that the network will explore the possiblity of setting up courses on Roma education across the Aurora network and more broadly, and work with outreach officers to explore innovative practices on access.

Dr. Spyros Themelis, who led the workshop, will explore options for hosting a face-to-face meeting at the start of the new academic year. If you have any suggestions or would like to get involved, please email Spyros at:

We welcome contributions from across all Aurora universities.

Co-creation training workshop

Join us at the international co-creation event from February 3rd to 5th.

During this event, you will learn from co-creation experts from AURORA universities and beyond, and also join theoretical discussions and share experiences, practices and knowledge. The training will include interactive co-creation activities and sessions that will provide a first-hand experience of the practice of co-creation. Together we connect and build synergies. This event is open for interested educators/teachers, researchers, co-creation practitioners and experts, students, and community partners. PhD’s students who join this training can obtain 3 ECTS.

Interested? Please register here and/or contact Evert van Grol.

Open Educational

Aurora partners are invited to the webinar series on Open Educational Resources starting December 14th. The series are meant to illustrate a strategic part of universities’ improvement in the sector of Open Education. The OER group wants to sensibilize teaching staff and students for Open Educational Resources. It aims to raise awareness within Aurora universities of the many possibilities that Open Educational Resources offer. OER stimulates collaboration between teachers by reusing and remixing open materials. Students can participate in developing new and open educational resources.

In the webinars, the motto “content is king” will be used to emphasize the importance of free access to content, benefits, conditions of the creation and provision of learning materials. Grab this opportunity to learn more about Open Educational Resources. These webinars will be organized in December, January, February, and March. Check out the program for more information.

To follow a webinar, click on the button below

Meeting-ID: 632 7666 4698

Password: 170896

Webinar Series in November

We may not have had the opportunity to visit all ten of the other universities, nor indeed those countries, but in the five years since Aurora began, how well do we really know our Aurora partners?

We’re all research-intensive with an international outlook, collectively supporting our students to become global entrepreneurs. But could you list the home country of each partner? Its academic strengths? Its research collaborations?

The Borderless Learning: Recognition and Mobility Group has hosted a week-long series of webinars from November 2nd to 5th, aiming to answer questions from the very basic level – why would a student choose to study there – from its campus and location to its courses, to its inclusive community. Each Aurora university will take just 60 minutes, all following a similar structure and format, to showcase itself to other Aurora universities.

Whether you’re a student, an administrative adviser or coordinator of placements, or an academic looking to strengthen your European partnerships; watch the recordings to find out more. You could just turn out to be learning about your next destination.

Get To Know Your Aurora University Study Abroad Partner Destinations – A Webinar Series for students and staff

Are you on a study abroad pathway? Interested in studying a short course abroad? Keen to experience living and learning in another part of Europe? Or helping to advise those that are? Watch as many of these eleven webinars as you like! All have been recorded. Please take a look at all the videos below and find the university of your interest.












Open International Webinar Artificial Intelligence in & for the Global South

From June 2nd to June 4th, the master-level “ICT4D in the Field” course kicks off with an Open International Webinar Artificial Intelligence in & for the Global South. The webinar is opened by Prof. Dr Gabriel Ayum Teye, Vice-Chancellor University for Development Studies UDS, Ghana; Prof. Dr Mirjam van Praag, President Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands & Chair Aurora European University Alliance, and Prof. Datuk Dr Mohammad Kadim bin Suaidi, Vice-Chancellor Universiti Malaysia Sarawak UNIMAS, Malaysia.

Many speakers from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, UDS Ghana and Unimas Malaysia will host webinars on topics like Knowledge engineering & management: dealing with specialist knowledge, Data analytics for patient health monitoring, Digital socio-technical innovation and indigenous knowledge in South-East Asia, and many more.

Access the Webinar zoom ID and password by clicking the button below:

The master course ICT4D in the Field is the first course in the Aurora pilot “Digital Society and Global Citizenship”. The course’s central theme will be: “Artificial Intelligence in and for the Global South”. Previously, this course has been carried out in a real-world environment. Students were exposed to complex contexts and real-world challenges. They design and implement practical, user-centred and sustainable socio-technological solutions for disadvantaged communities according to a Community Service Learning (CSL) approach. This year the course has been “Aurorized”, i.e. redesigned as part of the Aurora Alliance educational pilot, into “collaborative online international learning” while maintaining its global and Community Service flavour. A visual preview of the course:

Join a short course in Europe this summer

Ready to make the most of your summer? Want to study in another part of Europe?

Learn a new skill, develop new knowledge to enhance your degree studies and graduate prospects?

All Aurora university students have the benefit of learning what’s on offer this summer at other Aurora universities, through this one-stop-shop of your Aurora options this summer*. From Global Health to International Criminal Justice and from Central Europe and European Integration to Global Transitional Sociology, there’s a range of subjects to suit everyone, and in many cases, special discounts are provided for students from other Aurora universities.

So what are you waiting for?

Click the button below to access the summer school courses, find out more, check dates and deadlines, and find out how to apply.

Each Aurora Alliance university has an allocation of Aurora Alliance funding to support outward mobility and this may be available for short courses in Europe this summer. Please check with your home university’s study abroad office for details on how to access relevant funding.

Would you like to be kept updated with Aurora university short courses and summer schools and associated funding opportunities? Please register your interest by completing this short form. You can also use the form to ask questions that we can direct to the appropriate Aurora university.

We hope you will be able to take the opportunity to study abroad at another Aurora university during your degree!

*Please note that some dates are to be confirmed and delivery modes may change due to unforeseen circumstances. Please get in touch directly with the hosting university for final details.

Aurora Care and Compassion Student Event

The Aurora Student Council is delighted to be hosting the Aurora Care and Compassion Student event. This free virtual conference is packed with engaging content showing how Aurora cares for issues in modern society and will get students involved in activities and conversation across 4 key areas. These areas are Mental Health and Wellbeing, Open Educational Resources, Celebrating and Promoting Diversity, and Sustainability.

Students’ participation in these activities and conversations will give them practical skills to take away and also help Aurora embed student voice into the heart of many exciting projects. We want students to learn about Aurora and equip them with the tools to champion Aurora’s values in their own universities.

If you are a student interested in any of these topics or you know of students that would be interested, click the link here to register your interest and come and join us on March 30th 2021.

Click here for the program of the event.

Follow this page for updates on this event

Aurora Spring Academic Meeting

Meet peers facing similar challenges in providing students with high-quality education and with international opportunities in a forced online environment.

Learn what support Aurora is organising to assist academic teachers in meeting these challenges.

On March 30th, from 9 am to 1 pm (CET), Aurora is hosting its Spring Academic meeting. It will be a platform to meet with peers and discuss how to provide high quality learning under the currently restricted conditions.

The Aurora Spring Academic meeting is a follow up to the Aurora Community building event of January 28th, 2019, focusing on the same domains.

The Spring meeting is an event in the Aurora Alliance European University programme, which aims to strengthen the way in which Aurora students are equipped with the skills and mind-sets to act as social entrepreneurs and innovators in addressing societal problems.

The Event

The Spring Academic meeting aims at academic who feel attached to the following domains:

  1. Sustainability & Climate Change
  2. Digital Society & Global Citizenship
  3. Health & Well-being
  4. Culture: Diversity & Identity
  5. Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation.

The Spring event is organised mostly in parallel strands for each of the domains to meet. There will be ample time in the programme to freely discuss topics of mutual interest – in education, research or otherwise. The core of the programme will be sessions on two key challenges in higher education with the current restrictions:

  • How are we as academic teachers finding our way from high-quality analogue (or offline) to digital (or online) education,
  • How can we continue to provide our students with a meaningful international experience, particularly in the pandemic and post-pandemic context,

Topics and tools

The Aurora Spring Academic event is an excellent opportunity to find out how your university’s participation in Aurora can be valuable to you: as a platform to meet with peers, find out how you can learn from and with each other, learn about the tools Aurora is developing to support the member universities in providing academically excellent and societally relevant education.

In the sessions, you will have the opportunity to discuss what you see as the most pressing issues in these two key challenges – and how these can be addressed.

With the maintenance of quality in virtual education, there will be specific attention to higher education’s value beyond the subject-related knowledge and skills.

With continued international dimensions with less physical mobility, there will be specific attention on tools and platforms for virtual mobility and online joint courses.

The Aurora Spring Academic event will be hosted on the Gatherly platform, which allows you to freely move and chat with participants in groups of two’s or three’s or more.


Before and after the sessions, you may visit info desks on the various tools and platforms developed in the Aurora European University Alliance programme; see below under the programme description.

You can stop by the info desks of your interest and get in touch with the colleagues involved.


So what can you expect as takeaways from this event?

  1. Meet, discuss and arrange follow-up contact with peers on your issues and concerns in the transit from analogue to high-quality digital education and/or students’ international opportunities
  2. Find out about existing good practices in high-quality digital education and virtual international experience
  3. Learn about useful Aurora tools and platforms for these challenges and meet the experts who can help you use them.

Please view the full programme of the event here.

Follow this page for updates on this event.

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