open calls

Global Minds UAntwerpen 2017-2021


The Global Minds programme sits in the overlap between three central constituents of the vision of the UAntwerp:

The UAntwerp considers first of all internationalisation as a central concern for its activities in education, research and societal innovation, and this policy will also be carried forward by the new management team of UAntwerp. The university considers sustainable development as a second core task to guide innovation and change at the university. Third and finally, the university’s concern for diversity and equal opportunities is an important guide to, among others, its policy of student recruitment and staff mobility and its location in a metropolitan context certainly warrants such a concern.

The preparation of the Global Minds proposal has obliged us to take stock not just of our strengths but also of the remaining gaps. In the course of the preparation of the GM plan and the inherent discussion on university development cooperation in general, we first of all created a new platform, the Steering Committee on Development Cooperation. The main task of the newly created Steering Committee for Development Cooperation is to further embed development cooperation into all existing structures and policy actions, this is reflected in its composition (members from central and decentral entities as well as from administrative and academic units).

The UAntwerp is conscious about its position and mission as a member of broader society. The consequence is that the university tries to connect where possible with strategic choices of societal partners.

We also strive to systematically learn from what we do. The barometer research project is meant to identify the impact of our activities in awareness raising. In this regard, we can capitalize not just on previous initiatives carried out in the past, but also on the recent barometer research carried out by DGD.

Value for money can be expected by the fact that the activities mentioned in our GM plan were carefully selected to fill existing gaps and reinforce existing successful initiatives.

The University of Antwerp’s basic academic capacity to perform effective university cooperation for development with other stakeholders is guaranteed in order to contribute to development results in the South.

Our GM plan is operational in the realisation of the following output:

  • to build, deepen and retain development-relevant capacity by integrating development-relevant courses or course components into existing educational programmes (IR1) in a high-quality way. We target as many students as possible to increase their knowledge of development issues and to enrich regular learning trajectories with knowledge and experiences of people and regions whose knowledge and experiences have been underrepresented in today’s curricula;
  • a better integration of the development dimension into the research of the university (IR2) will improve the generation of policy-relevant research in support of development actors. The Global Minds programme will allow for more and better academic cooperation with Southern partners. This broadening and deepening of research expertise will have direct effects on development policy in the South;
  • the promotion of global citizenship (IR3) at UAntwerp by reaching a critical mass of students, potential and effective researchers and administrative staff allows to create an attitudinal change within and beyond the university.


It is important to acknowledge that the set of activities is not totally new and needs not to be invented from scratch. First of all, as mentioned before, GM allows us to continue investing in activities like the documentation centre, the series of debates/extra-curricular courses, the student travel grants, the immersion trips and (in part of) the on-campus sensitization activities, which were previously financed by GMs predecessor programmes. Second, activities like the research grant, development-relevant courses, the group travel, South partners as guest lecturers, the “small research grants” and scientific conferences were already existing, but as they were financed by other programmes, we need to rethink them within the rationale of Global Minds. Third, the “barometer research” is new, even if here too, we can draw on the existing UAntwerp experience with closely similar research (cfr. The survey on impact of 25 years of the University Foundation for Development Cooperation (USOS), April 2010).

Intervention type

Global Minds


01/01/2017 - 31/12/2021

This project is being implemented in:
Flemish promoter Danny Cassimon
Local partner institution Universiteit Antwerpen
Budget € 446.714