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DAAD wants to build stronger links with Ukraine

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Academic collaboration is vital part of reconstruction process, exchange service says

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) has called for Germany to adopt a greater commitment to academic cooperation with Ukraine. 

Programmes to support university collaborations are essential for stabilising the Ukrainian education system and anchoring the country within Europe, DAAD said in a statement. 

“Russia has been waging a war of attrition in Ukraine…severely damaging the Ukrainian education and science system,” said DAAD president Joybrato Mukherjee.

“It is therefore necessary for the international community to develop concrete reconstruction plans at an early stage,” he said. “Ukraine’s path to a better future and to [membership of] the EU also leads through higher education and science.”

Reconstruction needed

German universities are already prepared to support the reconstruction of Ukrainian universities, Mukherjee said. These activities must be expanded and cross-border academic cooperation intensified, DAAD said.

It has proposed setting up a German-Ukrainian University Network to encourage academic cooperation. The network could train the experts needed to guide work on reconstructing the country and help develop a science-orientated relationship with the EU, it said.

“If Ukraine’s integration into the EU is to succeed, all those involved will need a great deal of patience,” said Mukherjee. “By permanently linking Ukrainian universities and research institutions with partners in the EU, we will ultimately increase security throughout Europe.”