On the 4th & 5th of November, the first transnational partners meeting for the Jean Monnet Network “NEAR-EU” took place at the TU Darmstadt. Τhe meeting attended Academics from Israel, Germany, Slovenia, New Zealand, Canada, Singapore and Greece.

The overall goal of the NEAR-EU project is to broaden the field of European integration studies by incorporating the domain of higher education in the research and activities of European Study Centers and departments of international affairs.

The project will develop an inter-regional, collaborative academic space to enhance the study of European higher education policy and academic internationalization. The developments in European higher education policy in recent decades, with the EHEA and the Bologna Process in particular, have set the stage for exploring European integration studies from a further social perspective- that of higher education policy and practice...The project intends to establish Bologna Resource Centers (BRC), for the study and research of European HE, within and outside Europe and to create a nexus among them.

The Jean Monnet Network, “NEAR-EU” is coordinated by Ben-Gurion, University of the Negev (BGU), the Centre for the Study of European Politics and Society-CSEPS and the Jean Monnet Center of Excellence that is coordinated by Prof. Sharon Bardo, Jean Monnet ad Personam. The partners of the Network are, the Institute for European Studies, University of British Columbia, Canada, the TU Darmstadt, the National Centre for Research on Europe, University of Canterbury, the Public Policy and Global Affairs Programme, Nanyang Technological University, the University of Ljubljana and the University of Piraeus.

The meeting attended, Dr. Michel Knodt, Professor in Political Science and leader of the Energy Centre at TU Darmstadt, Dr. Sharon Pardo, Professor at the Department of Politics and Government, Director of the National Centre for the Study of European Politics and Society at BGU and Jean Monnet Chair ad personam, Dr Meng-Hsuan Chou, Assistant Professor at Nanyang Technological University and Associate Fellow at the EU Center Singapore, Pavel Zgaga, Professor at the University of Ljubljana, Dr. Foteini Asderaki, Jean Monnet Chair on European Union’s Education, Training, Research, Innovation Policy, Assistant Professor at the department of International and European Studies and Director of ERDIC Laboratory, Dr. Christina Kontogoulidou, Head of the International & Public Relations Office and Bologna Expert, Dr. Martin Holland, Jean Monnet Chair ad personam, Director of the National Center for Research on Europe at the University of Canterbury and of the EU Centers Network New Zealand, Dr. Will Shannon, researcher at the National Centre for Research in Europe, University of Canterbury, Kurt Huebner, Professor and Jean Monnet Chair for the European Integration and Global Political Economy at the Institute for European Studies at the University of British Columbia, Dr Conrad King, PhD candidate at the University of British Columbia.